Video: Six million pints at risk, AstraZeneca decision, Gardaí complaints

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Kenneth Fox

Daily cases

A further 380 cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in the Republic by the Department of Health.

There are 38 people hospitalised with the disease, and 13 people in intensive care. Data on deaths remains unavailable due to a cyberattack on the health service.

In Northern Ireland, an additional 229 cases were also confirmed on Friday, with no further deaths reported over the past 24 hours. As of this morning, there were 16 Covid-19 positive patients in hospital, none of whom were in intensive care.

A total of 101 cases have been identified in Limerick over the past five days, which has public health experts “concerned”, an informed source said.

Pints at risk

Around six million pints of beer brewed for the reopening of indoor hospitality on July 5th are now at risk, according to industry body Drinks Ireland.

The group estimates that 70,000 kegs of beer, equating to around six million pints, have been brewed to restock 3,500 hospitality outlets in preparation for the reopening.

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It comes as a delay to the return of indoor hospitality is looking increasingly likely, as Government and official sources indicated the full return of pubs and restaurants will be pushed back from the planned date.

Head of Beer at Drinks Ireland, Jonathan McDade, said the country’s hospitality sector and its brewers required “crystal clear clarity urgently” on a reopening date for the sector.

AstraZeneca decision

The Government is weighing up the “risk equation” of vaccinating younger people against the coronavirus with AstraZeneca’s shot, according to experts.

The preference among experts spoken to by The Irish Times is to stick with the current policy of vaccinating younger people with mRNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna, if they are available.

It comes after the Taoiseach said vaccines from AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson should be reconsidered for younger age groups to fight the spread of the Delta variant.

Speaking at a meeting of the European Council in Brussels on Friday, Mr Martin said the “balance of risk” had changed due to the Delta variant.

Gardaí allegations

The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (Gsoc) received 3,089 allegations made against members of the force in 2020, according to the Commission's annual report published on Friday.

Last year, 1,955 complaints against gardaí were opened, while 1,724 complaints were closed. Nineteen protected disclosures were also made during the same period.

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There were 572 criminal investigations launched by Gsoc in 2020, while 26 public interest investigations were also opened, which are undertaken without the submission of a complaint or direction from the Garda Commissioner.

The report notes that Gardaí made 43 referrals for Gsoc's consideration in instances where “the conduct of a member of the Garda Síochána may have resulted in the death of, or serious harm to a person".

UK Delta variant

Cases of the Delta variant of Covid-19 first identified in India have risen 46 per cent in a week across the UK, new figures show.

Public Health England (PHE) said there had been 35,204 more cases since last week to reach a total of 111,157 – a 46 per cent increase.

Some 42 of these cases are the Delta AY.1 sub lineage.

India’s health ministry has said studies show that this so-called “Delta plus” variant spreads more easily, binds more easily to lung cells and is potentially resistant to monoclonal antibody therapy, which can help neutralise the virus.

Salad parasite

A diarrhoea-causing parasite left 40 people ill including 14 who required hospitalisation in the south Dublin and Wicklow area last July.

The youngest impacted by the food-borne outbreak of Crytosporidium was 3 and the oldest aged 74.

Along with the 14 who required hospitalisation, a further seven presented at hospital emergency departments but were not admitted.

The outbreak was likely caused by the consumption by the people concerned of baby salad leaves that were supplied in salad leaf boxes to a number of restaurants.

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