LIVE: Latest cases due as Ireland becomes country with highest infection rate

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“Very high” admission rates to hospitals

Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health said: “While we are seeing the first glimmer of hope in respect of our daily case figures and positivity rates, the situation in hospitals and ICUs around the country continues to worsen day on day. We know that hospitalisations occur some weeks after a confirmed case is notified, and mortality after that again. That means we are unfortunately set for a period of time where the situation in our hospitals gets worse before it gets better.”

“The best way forward now is for all of us to stay at home. Staying at home and cutting your contacts right down to only those in your immediate household is the one vital way we will protect our healthcare system as it struggles with the burdens brought on by this surge in COVID-19 infections.”

Dr Michael Power, HSE Clinical Lead for Intensive Care, said: “Over the past weeks, we have seen a swift and sharp spike in admissions into critical care units across the country. As of this morning, we have 146 people sadly in ICU. This is nearing the springtime peak of 155 people in critical care. The potential long-term impacts on these patients’ health is stark and significant. ICUs are not where we want anyone to be. They are our very last line of defence against COVID-19. The best way we can protect our ICU capacity and those that work in them is to stay at home.”

Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group said: “The alarming level of disease is unprecedented in terms of our experience of the levels of COVID-19 in the community. We are seeing numbers of cases per day, and numbers in hospital, that we just could not have comprehended prior to Christmas. The tools to address this accelerated growth rate are in our hands and we know from experience how we can significantly suppress transmission of the virus.

“We are beginning to see the first signs of the impact of the latest public health measures, with test positivity falling and case numbers starting to stabilise, but this will only continue if every one of us is committed to following the public health advice to stay at home and work from home as much as possible. This is vital in order to make significant headway over the next 7 days and to reduce the pressure on our health services and healthcare colleagues”.

Source: Dublin News