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SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

More PPE due to arrive from China this week

Another two batches of personal protective equipment will arrive in Ireland from China this week.

The HSE ordered more than €200m worth of the masks, gowns and other gear from China recently.

The first batch arrived in Ireland earlier this month, but about 20% of it was not suitable for general healthcare use.

But HSE chief executive Paul Reid says more will arrive in the coming days.

“We are currently in discussion with China to have the delivery of the second batch and to try aim to accelerate the third batch from later in this week,” he said.

“We do still face very significant issues all across the healthcare system, and particularly this week in terms of gowns.

“Our Chief Clinical Officer will be communicating out to ensure that we use the gowns properly and effectively until we get the further delivery later this week.”

The health chief has also been defending the HSE's record for coronavirus testing and tracing.

“We’ve built this up hugely over the last number of weeks but now we need to put in a full end to end process oversight,” said Mr Reid.

“I’ve recently appointed Ms Niamh O’Byrne who will come and work for me on a secondment from EY for the net six months.

“Very positively, we’ve had support and we’ve strengthened our overall capacity.

“And during this week we will now be in a position where we don’t have a back log and we will be returning these tests in a more timely manner.”

    The current restrictions started on Friday, March 27. They mandate that everyone should stay at home, only leaving to:

  • Shop for essential food and household goods;
  • Attend medical appointments, collect medicine or other health products;
  • Care for children, older people or other vulnerable people - this excludes social family visits;
  • Exercise outdoors - within 2kms of your home and only with members of your own household, keeping 2 metres distance between you and other people
  • Travel to work if you provide an essential service - be sure to practice physical distancing

Last week, Bono wrote to the South Korean President, Moon Jae-in, asking him to help Ireland tackle the Covid-19 pandemic.

The U2 frontman has asked for personal protective equipment and said he will pay for them himself.

The Asian country was initially one of the worst affected by the global outbreak, but its strong medical response has limited the number of deaths and confirmed cases.