NPHET meet to discuss possible easing of restrictions for children and parents

Some Covid-19 restrictions could be eased sooner, specifically for children and their parents.

The National Public Health Emergency Team meets this morning to examine how to lift some of the measures to reduce the burden on young families.

Public health officials say they're aware of the impact of the restrictions on those under-18 and their parents, and the low rate of transmission in that age group.

A further 12 people with Covid-19 have died, bringing the death toll to 1,583, while there have been 24,391 confirmed cases.

Deputy chief medical officer Ronan Glynn says this morning's meeting will also look at changing some of the rules around testing.

"Certainly given the capacity we have, we want to ensure that anyone who needs to be tested will be tested," he said.

"Whether that's individuals in the community as a whole or if there's particular sectors or groups that need an enhanced testing strategy or approach.

"We're in a very fortunate position now that we have very significant spare capacity. What we need to ensure is that we can capitalise on that as and when we need it over the coming weeks."

    Useful information
  • The HSE have developed an information pack on how to protect yourself and others from coronavirus. Read it here
  • Anyone with symptoms of coronavirus who has been in close contact with a confirmed case in the last 14 days should isolate themselves from other people - this means going into a different, well-ventilated room alone, with a phone; phone their GP, or emergency department;
  • GPs Out of Hours services are not in a position to order testing for patients with normal cold and flu-like symptoms. HSELive is an information line and similarly not in a position to order testing for members of the public. The public is asked to reserve 112/999 for medical emergencies at all times.
  • ALONE has launched a national support line and additional supports for older people who have concerns or are facing difficulties relating to the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) in Ireland. The support line will be open seven days a week, 8am-8pm, by calling 0818 222 024