Covid-19 latest: Department of Health confirms 6,110 additional cases of which 291 are in Cork

Covid-19 latest: Department of Health confirms 6,110 additional cases of which 291 are in Cork

 Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health. Picture Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

The Department of Health has confirmed that 6,110 new cases of Covid-19 have been diagnosed in Ireland as of midnight last night.

Six additional Covid-19 related deaths have also been notified to the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) today.

Of the confirmed new cases there are 3,655 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.

2,911 are men and 3,195 are women, with 63% under 45 years of age.

As of 2pm today, 776 Covid-19 patients are hospitalised, of which 70 are in ICU.

There were 92 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.

Commenting, Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health called for solidarity amid surging case numbers.

"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," he said.

Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, expressed serious concerns about the latest data.

"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," he said.

Dr Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer at the 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," he said.

Mr Liam Woods, HSE National Director, Acute Operations, said the HSE is 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," he said.

Professor Karina Butler, Chair of the National Immunisation Advisory Committee, said the roll out of Covid vaccines has been accelerated. 

"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," she said.

So far, there have been 2,265 Covid-19 related deaths in Ireland.

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