Covid-19: 1,582 cases in hospital, over 40% of new cases linked to UK variant

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James Cox

There are currently 1,582 Covid-19 patients being treated in hospital, of which 146 are in ICU.

Meanwhile, over 40 per cent of new cases in the past seven days can be traced back to the new UK variant.

Eight further Covid-19 related deaths and 4,929 additional cases were confirmed in the Republic of Ireland on Monday.

Speaking at tonight's National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) meeting, Dr Michael Power, HSE Clinical Lead for Intensive Care, said: “Over the past weeks, we have seen a swift and sharp spike in admissions into critical care units across the country. As of this morning, we have 146 people sadly in ICU. This is nearing the springtime peak of 155 people in critical care.

“The potential long-term impacts on these patients’ health is stark and significant. ICUs are not where we want anyone to be. They are our very last line of defence against Covid-19. The best way we can protect our ICU capacity and those that work in them is to stay at home.”

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Dr Cillian De Gascun, Medical Virologist and Director of the National Virus Reference Laboratory, said: “Further testing of Covid-19 samples indicates that the UK variant continues to account for an increasing number of cases– more than 40% of the positive cases tested in the last 7 days can be traced back to this variant."

Dr De Gascun added: “The greater risk of infection posed by this new variant increases the risk of transmission of the disease in the community. Now, more than ever, there is an urgent need for vigilance in our individual response to the disease, which is spread through close proximity to others. This virus cannot spread when households do not mix together, when social gatherings do not occur and when people stay at home for all but essential reasons.”

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