Covid cases double at local hospital this month

The number of inpatients at Cavan General Hospital, who have tested positive for COVID-19, is at its highest point in almost two months.

As of Sunday last, June 19, there were 13 Covid positive patients admitted at Cavan General, more than double the amount at the start of this month (six). Two of those were receiving treatment in the Intensive Care or the High Dependency Unit.

Not since April 27 have figures been so high, at a time when infection numbers nationally began to wane.

According to the latest information available from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC), 18 new cases of Covid were confirmed in Cavan on June 14, with 144 over the previous two weeks.

Neighbouring Co Monaghan had 20 cases confirmed, with 108 in the previous fortnight.

Elsewhere across the region, similar levels of fresh infection have been reported in the community, with 11 in Longford, and 87 over the previous two weeks; Meath 49/528, Leitrim 3/58; and Westmeath 48/219.

The INMO has requested that the Emergency Department Taskforce on Covid meet as a matter of urgency, and described the response from the HSE on the latest wave of infection as “inadequate”.

“The fact that this important body has not convened in a time period where we have seen over 3,566 patients on trolleys and a 76% increase in Covid hospitalisations since the 4th of June is completely inexcusable.”

Last week Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly, confirmed that NUI Galway’s Professor Breda Smyth will take up a role as interim Chief Medical Officer (CMO) from July 4, pending the completion of the competition to fill the role permanently.

She will replace Dr Tony Holohan who is set to step down as CMO on July 1 after 14 years in the position.

Professor Smyth contributed significantly to Ireland’s COVID-19 response having been a member of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET), the Rapid Testing Expert Advisory Group. She was also a founding member of the COVID-19 - Irish Epidemiology Modelling Advisory Group (IEMAG).