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Coronavirus: Five deaths reported and 69 new cases as GPs report increase in those seeking tests

There have been five new Coronavirus death reported today – meaning 1,768 is the death toll in Ireland.

However, it is important to note than four of these deaths are late notice and took place in May and June.

While there has been a total of 69 new cases of Coronavirus have been diagnosed in Ireland today.

Of the 69 cases today, 22 cases are located in Offaly, 19 in Kildare, 8 in Laois, 6 in Dublin, and 14 are spread across eight other counties (Clare, Cork, Donegal, Galway, Limerick, Louth, Meath and Wexford).

Over the past 14 days, 469 cases have been notified and 53 are in Laois.

That means there is now a total of 26,372 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.

Dr Ronan Glynn, Acting Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said; “Over the past fourteen days, 226 cases have arisen in Kildare, Laois and Offaly. These represent almost half of all cases in Ireland over that time period.

“While the majority of these cases can be accounted for by outbreaks, this volume of cases is significant and our main priority now is to ensure that these outbreaks do not lead to widespread community transmission in the region.

“NPHET continues to monitor the situation closely. I urge people in these counties to remain vigilant to stop the further spread of COVID-19 in these areas.”

Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said; “We have seen a significant increase in the incidence of COVID-19 over the past week. The reproduction number for the virus is now estimated to be 1.8.

“A reproduction number of almost 2 is a serious concern, and although we have not yet seen a significant increase in community transmission, there is a significant risk this could develop over the coming days and weeks emphasising the need for each of us to be extremely cautious that we do not contribute to the transmission of the virus.”

Dr Colm Henry, Chief Clinical Officer, HSE said; “Public Health teams have been informed of the locations of these outbreaks as is routine and contact tracing and testing is taking place as appropriate. Our focus now is on controlling these outbreaks and taking action as necessary.

“We also need people to continue to follow our public health advice and avoid crowds, especially indoors, and limit the number of people you meet.

“The Department of Health and HSE launched the next phase of our communications campaign today encouraging people to keep up the protective behaviours of physical distancing, washing our hands regularly, wearing a face covering where appropriate and downloading the COVID-19 Tracker app.”

GPs report increase in those seeking tests 

GPs have reported a large increase in the number of patients seeking referral for Covid-19 testing since the August bank holiday weekend.

The online resource for GPs, GPbuddy.ie, has been asking doctors to monitor the number of patients seeking referral for testing for Covid-19.

They have seen a large increase in the number of patients with symptoms and an increase in the number of cases being referred per doctor since the weekend.

However, GPbuddy said they often see a “bank holiday spike” and hope results over the next few days will be lower.

Everyone should be aware of the risk factors for getting COVID-19:

  • Distance – the risk of getting COVID-19 increases as the distance between you and others gets smaller. Keep 2 metres apart where possible
  • Activity – How you spend time with people and what you do with them can increase your risk. Follow the government’s Stay Safe Guidelines when spending time with others
  • Time – The more time you spend in close contact with other people can increase your risk of getting COVID-19. Keep track of who you spend time with and how
  • Environment – Being outdoors is safer than being indoors. Where possible, meet with others outdoors. If this is not possible, keep windows and doors open when meeting others inside
  • Symptoms – Know the symptoms. If you have them self-isolate and contact your GP immediately

Public Health Advice for all citizens available here: 

Know the symptoms of COVID-19

SEE ALSO – Laois GAA championship games postponed following positive Coronavirus case