Coronavirus: Two further deaths and 299 new cases

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said the rollout of coronavirus vaccines could begin early in the new year. Photo: Paul Faith/AFP via Getty
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Tomas Doherty

A further two deaths and 299 new cases of Covid-19 have been recorded in the Republic.

It brings the total number of deaths linked to coronavirus to 2,052.

Of the new cases, 67 per cent are in people aged under 45, with 94 cases located in Dublin, 41 in Donegal, 27 in Wicklow, 14 in Louth, 13 in Limerick and the remaining 110 cases spread across 20 other counties

The latest figures show 257 Covid-19 patients are in hospital, with 30 in intensive care.

Counties Donegal and Louth have the highest infection rates in the State.

In Donegal, the 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 population is 219.9, and in Louth it now stands at 184.7. The lowest rate is in Leitrim at 21.8.


Covid vaccine

This comes as the Minister for Health said the rollout of coronavirus vaccines could begin early in the new year.

Stephen Donnelly is due to meet with Prof Brian MacCraith, head of the State’s vaccination taskforce, on Monday.

Prof MacCraith’s team is scheduled to deliver a rollout strategy to Government in mid-December and the Minister for Health is optimistic about their introduction in January.

Mr Donnelly said: “Potentially early in the new year we could be looking at things. Brian MacCraith and his team are obviously very quickly putting in place the distribution needed for that.

“I’d say December is unlikely to be honest with you, but quite soon.”

Northern Ireland

Meanwhile in the North, there were three further deaths linked to Covid-19 and an additional 351 confirmed cases reported on Sunday.

Health Minister says Covid vaccine could be rolled...
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The total number of deaths linked to the disease is edging towards the 1,000 mark, with a total of 986 as of Sunday.

The latest figures showed there are now 414 patients with coronavirus in hospitals, with 34 of those in intensive care units.

There are now 12 intensive care beds available in the health service in the North, while overall hospital bed occupancy is at 93 per cent.

There have been 52,175 confirmed cases of the disease in the region since the pandemic began. – Additional reporting: PA

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