Dr Tony Holohan

Over 6,000 new Covid cases and 70 people in ICU

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre has today been notified of 6,110 new cases of COVID-19. Six additional deaths related to the virus have also been reported, bringing the total death toll from the virus in Ireland to 2,265.

As of midnight, Sunday 3rd January, the HPSC has been notified of 61 new cases of the virus in County Cavan and 51 in County Monaghan.

There have been 510 new cases of the virus reported in the Breffni county in the 14-day period up to midnight on January 3. It translates to an incidence rate of 669.5 cases per 100,000 of population.

The national average is 582.8/100K.

The virus is most prevalent in Monaghan where 687 cases were reported in the past fortnight. It makes for an incidence rate of 1,119.1/100K or almost double the national average.

There have now a total of 107,997 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland since Coronavirus was first confirmed here on February 29 last.

Of the cases notified today:

- 2,911 are men / 3,195 are women

- 63% are under 45 years of age

- The median age is 36 years old

- Of today's cases 3,655 were in Dublin, 323 in Kildare, 291 in Cork, 234 in Limerick, 137 in Louth and the remaining 1,470 cases are spread across all other counties.

As of 2pm today, 776 COVID-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 70 are in ICU. There have been 92 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.

Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said; “Leaders and organisations in communities across the country now need to support their colleagues, neighbours, family and friends to keep to the spirit of public health advice. We must restrict our movements, we have to limit the people we interact with outside of our households, if we are to suppress the virus and sustain our essential services.”

Dr Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said; “People particularly vulnerable to COVID-19 include older persons and people with pre-existing medical conditions including cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease and cancer. The incidence of disease in the community is now at a level where vulnerable people need to stay at home unless absolutely essential.”

Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said: “Scenario models raise the possibility of 1,500-2,000 people in hospital, and 200-400 people in ICU by mid-January, if we do not act to radically reduce transmission and incidence. It will take all of us, adopting the public health measures of staying home and reducing contacts, to suppress current levels of disease.”

Mr Liam Woods, HSE National Director, Acute Operations, said; “We are introducing curtailments in non-essential services in adult hospitals in order to cope with increasing COVID-19 admissions. This will be subject to ongoing review. In the event of emergency attend an Emergency Department as usual and if you have any concerns regarding your health, COVID or non COVID related, always contact your GP in the first instance.”

Professor Karina Butler, Chair of the National Immunisation Advisory Committee, said; “The vaccination programme has commenced for the first priority groups. The roll out has been accelerated this week. As we continue to provide vaccines across the population, we urge anyone with concerns or questions to contact their GP, pharmacist or healthcare service provider for factual and reliable information. The HSE.ie website also provides reliable information around vaccine efficacy and safety.”