Covid-19 rise expected following St Patrick’s Day and good weather

ireland
Covid-19 Rise Expected Following St Patrick’s Day And Good Weather Covid-19 Rise Expected Following St Patrick’s Day And Good Weather
The possible surge comes just a week before the Cabinet is due to review which Level 5 restrictions may be lifted. Photo: Getty Images.
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The Government is expecting a rise in Covid-19 case numbers following St Patrick’s Day, Mother’s Day and the recent good weather.

On Sunday, the State reported its highest number of new Covid-19 cases in three weeks, as 769 cases were confirmed.

The Irish Times reports that Government sources said that recent figures were not surprising and that further increases could be expected once the full effects of recent social gatherings became evident later this week.

The possible surge in Covid-19 infections comes just a week before the Cabinet is due to review which Level 5 restrictions may be lifted in early April.

While health officials had expressed recent concern about case numbers stalling at about 500 to 600 per day for the last few weeks, Sunday’s total was the highest seen since February 26th.

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Offaly has the highest incidence rate in the country at 411 cases per 100,000, followed by Longford at 296 and Kildare at 249.

On Sunday, chief executive of the HSE Paul Reid said there has been a slight increase in the number of people admitted to hospital with coronavirus over the weekend.

There are currently 360 patients hospitalised with the virus.

Mr Reid told Newstalk's On The Record programme that hospital numbers have been “stuck” over recent weeks and the number of patients with Covid-19 is the same as the peak in the second wave.

He said he could sense the public’s “frustration and anger” in recent days.

“All we can do is tell the facts of where things are at the minute and you would be concerned with what you see happening across Europe,” he added.

“From the HSE’s perspective, we still see a very high positivity rate.”

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Mr Reid said that a close contact of a positive case has a 25 per cent likelihood of becoming infected.

“We know the transmission levels, particularly of this B117 variant, are still very strong and the positivity rate is still very high,” he added.

“It is important that everyone protects themselves and hold their guard.”

GPs have also reported a rise in referrals for Covid-19 tests.

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