24 new cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in County Kildare today, out of a national total of 136 cases. One person with Covid-19 has died, according to the Health Protection Surveillance Centre.
NPHET, the National Public Health Emergency Team met today to consider the restrictions placed on Kildare, Laois and Offaly almost two weeks ago due to a spike in cases in those three counties, which are due to end next weekend. Speculation is growing, however, that while this set of restrictions may be lifted in Laois and Offaly, they will not be in Kildare - however, this speculation is unconfirmed.
The Government is considering NPHET's advice, but an announcement on the restrictions is not expected until tomorrow. Dr Ronan Glynn said at this evening's NPHET press briefing that he would not be commenting on the advice issued concerning Kildare, Laois and Offaly.
Of 1,311 cases of Covid-19 in Ireland over the last 14 days, 33% or 435 cases occurred in County Kildare. There are currently 18 cases in hospital in Ireland, and six in critical care units.
Of today's new cases, 54 are men and 81 are women; 78% are under 45 years of age; 57 are confirmed to be associated with outbreaks or are close contacts of a confirmed case. 11 cases have been identified as community transmission.
51 cases are in Dublin, 24 in Kildare, 12 in Kilkenny, 11 in Tipperary, 7 in Cork, 6 in Limerick, 6 in Wexford, 5 in Meath and the remaining 14 cases are in Carlow, Cavan, Donegal, Galway, Mayo, Offaly, Roscommon, Waterford and Wicklow.
Dr. Ronan Glynn, Acting Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said; “The core message from NPHET this week is to limit your social networks. Stick to a limit of six people from no more than three households indoors, and 15 people outdoors. Risk assess your environment and do not stay if it doesn’t feel safe. Remember that the virus wants large groups to gather together in order to spread. Do not give it the opportunity. We can continue to suppress this disease in Ireland by working together and staying apart.”
Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said; “The R-number is now at or above 1.2. There are two concerns now, the number of new cases per day remains high and the pattern has changed from large outbreaks in specific settings to much smaller outbreaks widely distributed across the country. The measures announced this week, asking us to stay apart, aim to suppress Covid-19 in the community.”