Video: High Covid numbers in hospitals, 46,000 cases among children, Afghanistan latest

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Covid hospitalisations

A further 1,688 cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in the Republic on Sunday.

It comes as the number of people in hospital with Covid-19 has risen to the highest level seen in almost five months.


Figures on Sunday morning showed more than 300 people in hospital with the disease, for the first time since March.

Hospitalised cases increased from 259 on Saturday to 314 on Sunday morning, while a later update showed the number of people in intensive care had also increased to 59.

The chief executive of the Health Service Executive (HSE) Paul Reid described the figures as a “very real” threat.

Covid: 46,000 cases among children since pandemic started

Over 46,000 children contracted Covid-19 between March 2020 and July 2021 according to a report by the HSE.


4 per cent of children in the State under that age of 18 tested positive for the virus during that period, 17 per cent of the overall number of cases recorded.

Since the first reopening of schools in August 2020, 832 outbreaks associated with staff and students have been reported, representing 3,650 cases. 90 per cent of outbreaks resulted in less than 10 confirmed cases.

As reported by The Irish Times, during the last academic year, 18 schools were forced to exclude all staff and students to allow Covid testing to be carried out and where outbreaks were confirmed. The report said these outbreaks were "usually of small-scale (2-3 subsequent cases) with usually friendship groups testing positive amongst both pupils and staff”.

It was also found that adult-to-adult, adult-to-child or child-to-child transmission was more common than child-to-adult transmission.


Two more Irish citizens evacuated from Afghanistan

Two more Irish citizens have been evacuated from Afghanistan, Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney has confirmed.

This means eight Irish citizens have now left the country since the Taliban took control, but another 34 remain – 23 adults and 11 dependants.

Mr Coveney said the situation at Kabul Airport continues to be volatile and encouraged Irish citizens not to travel there unless advised to by the Irish embassy.

He told RTÉ’s This Week programme: “We have 34 Irish citizens remaining to be evacuated, 23 of them are adults and 11 are dependants.


“There are now eight Irish citizens who have got out on various different flights and the remaining 34 are a mixture of Irish-only citizens who are largely working with NGOs or the UN and then a number of Afghan-Irish citizens, who are Irish citizens but originally from Afghanistan who have returned to visit family.

“We are fully committed to all 34; we are staying in close contact with them through the embassy in Abu Dhabi. They are getting regular updates in terms of advice because it is a very difficult and fluid situation.”

Six Irish people rescued from Sweden's highest mountain

The president of the Swedish Mountain Rescuers National Organisation, Rickard Svedjesten, has told of how six Irish people were rescued from the highest peak in his country, Kebnekaise, which is within the Arctic circle.

Such rescues were very common at this time of year he told RTÉ radio’s Today show when there was very good weather during the day but cold and windy conditions after dark.


The biggest problem was when people were not prepared. “Bad equipment and bad clothing” contributed to the issue, he said.

The rescue of the Irish party had to be deferred to first light today as conditions had been too cloudy for the rescue helicopter, he explained. The alarm was raised by a phone call from the group.

Nursing home worker found smoking beside ‘large oxygen cylinders’

A nursing home employee was seen smoking next to a number of “large oxygen cylinders” during a visit by a safety inspector.

A report by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) found that fire safety at the Limerick nursing home was “not compliant” with the required standard.

The unannounced inspection took place in April 2021, and found a number of flaws with fire safety and Covid-19 regulations.

Students will return to ‘near normal’ college experience

Students will return to a “near normal” third-level experience when colleges reopen in September, Professor Philip Nolan said.

Prof Nolan, a public health expert and president of Maynooth University, said some mitigations such as mask wearing and distancing measures will remain.

Ireland will have 90 per cent of its adult population fully vaccinated by mid-September, an “extraordinary achievement” that will offer “very high levels of protection”, he said.


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