Coronavirus Northern Ireland: Four more deaths and 1,464 Covid cases reported as passport becomes mandatory for certain venues

The Department of Health in Northern Ireland confirmed on Monday that four people have died after contracting Covid-19 in the past 24 hours.

ome 29 deaths have been recorded from the virus during the past seven days, a decrease from 43 in the previous seven days.

The latest coronavirus figures show the total deaths recorded since the start of the pandemic now stands at 2,873.

There are currently 32 active outbreaks in care homes.

A further 1,464 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, bringing the total of individuals who have tested positive since the pandemic began to 317,362.

Over the past seven days 11,643 people have tested positive, a slight decrease from 11,777 from the previous week.

The highest percentage of individuals testing positive were aged between 10 and 14.

There are 340 Covid-19 inpatients in Northern Ireland’s hospitals with 28 confirmed Covid-19 patients in ICU. 24 of these patients are on ventilators.

Hospital bed occupancy throughout the system currently stands at 100% with five hospitals operating over capacity.

This includes Antrim, Belfast City Hospital, Royal Victoria Hospital, South West Acute and Ulster Hospital.

By noon on Monday, a total of 3,012,036 vaccines and 358,238 booster jabs have been administered in Northern Ireland.

Monday (November 29) marks the first day of the mandatory Covid-19 vaccine passport scheme which will require those wanting to gain entry to certain hospitality and entertainment venues to show proof of vaccination.

The Department of Health confirmed that Covid certification regulations will now be made and commenced on Monday rather than being laid in draft form only.

Premises covered by the regulations will be required to comply from today but there will be a grace period without any enforcement up to December 13 2021.

If you cannot show proof of vaccination, you must demonstrate that you have a negative lateral flow test result, or proof of a coronavirus infection within the previous six months.

Meanwhile, Health Minister Robin Swann has said it remains “vital” that people get their Covid vaccine, despite concerns over its effectiveness against the new variant.

Mr Swann said it hasn’t been confirmed that current vaccines may be less effective against Omicron, but even if that turns out to be true, the jab should offer some protection.

Plans have been activated to identify any spread of the Omicron variant in Northern Ireland, with visitors from red list countries currently being traced.

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