Tributes are being to the students in Cork and around the country, who will be graduating early and will shortly enter the health workforce with a Cork consultant saying they will be able to look back with great pride and know that they "stepped up to the plate at a time their country needed them".
At a Health Service Executive (HSE) briefing today, Chief Clinical Officer with the HSE and consultant geriatrician with the Mercy University Hospital, Dr Colm Henry thanked staff across the health service for their efforts in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic.
He pointed out how some students had already graduated early online, and said some students in UCC would be graduating this week, and would enter the workplace soon after.
“Instead of going on a holiday after, they will be entering our workforce shortly. While they may miss out on those photographs and occasions, I think they and their parents will look back with pride, with great pride, that they stepped up to the plate at a time their country needed them,” Dr Henry said.
The comments come as the latest figures 9,655 cases of COVID-19 had been reported in Ireland up to Sunday lunchtime.
At today’s briefing, it was confirmed 862 peo0ple are now being treated for COVID-19 at hospitals around the country.
There are 2,172 beds available for patients around the country.
Two-hundred and seventy-five intensive care beds are currently in use among both patients with and without COVID-19, with 135 ICU beds available.
Under the HSE’s surge plan, in the region of 800 ICU beds can be made available.
A total of 114 patients are being ventilated.
Meanwhile, 64 patients have been discharged from ICUs.