Public urged to remain vigilant of Covid-19

The Chief Medical Officer makes the call as Ireland’s Covid-19 death toll increases by 17

The Chief Medical Officer (CMO) has urged the public to maintain physical distancing and respiratory etiquette measure as the Covid-19 death toll increased by 17.

There have now been a total 1,631 Covid-19-related deaths in Ireland since the outbreak began almost three months ago.

New figures from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) also showed that as of midnight on May 26 another 73 people were diagnosed with the virus, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 24,803.

Speaking at the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) briefing last night (May 27), the CMO Dr Tony Holohan recalled when restrictions were originally placed on the public in March the total number of confirmed novel coronavirus cases in the country was 43.

“I don’t think it is the time for us to begin widespread advocacy for change across a whole range of measures that we know actually worked,” Dr Holohan said.

He also said that 90 per cent of Covid-19 cases have since recovered.

“But we cannot afford to stop the hard work involved in suppressing this virus,” he continued.

“Covid-19 is a new disease. Ireland and the world understand more about the virus now than we did at the outset of this crisis. What we do know is that handwashing, physical distancing and knowing when to self-isolate do work.

“These measures are the most effective tool we have to keep this virus suppressed and keep up this recovery rate. We know that the vast majority of Irish people understand this, and that they are staying the course with us as we continue to keep case numbers as low as possible.”

Deputy CMO Dr Ronan Glynn added that the best way to avoid a second wave of the virus occurring was for the public to remain vigilant and cautious.

“What we do today has a direct effect on tomorrow,” he said.

“Continuing to follow the core public health advice is the best way to protect our most vulnerable now and in future.”

The HPSC data also revealed that as of midnight, May 25, when there were 24,730 cases, 57 per cent of people who had been diagnosed with the virus were female and 43 per cent were male.

The median age of confirmed cases was 48 years, 3,251 cases (13%) have been hospitalised, and 7,891 cases were associated with healthcare workers.

Of those hospitalised, 399 cases have been admitted to intensive care.

Dublin has the highest number of cases at 11,961 (48% of all cases) followed by Cork with 1,451 cases (6%) and then Kildare with 1,408 cases (6%).

Of those for whom transmission status was known community transmission accounted for 40 per cent, close contact accounts for 58 per cent, and travel abroad accounts for 2 per cent.

peter.doyle@imt.ie

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