HEALTH MINISTER WARNING AS COVID NUMBERS INCREASE

29 October 2021 No Comments by The Northern Standard

But Monaghan Incidence Rate is Below National Average

Michael Fisher

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has warned that the situation would get worse before it gets better as the number of Covid-19 cases over the past week is the fourth highest since the start of the pandemic. Speaking as he arrived for a Cabinet meeting yesterday, the Minister called for a real national effort by people to stick to public health measures. Ireland’s 14-day incidence rate is currently at around 500 cases per 100,000 of the population, he said. Asked about calls from the nightclub sector for a two-week grace period before implementing a new ticketing system, Minister Donnelly said that talks would continue between Government officials and industry representatives, but he did feel that that Government had gone quite far in terms of the hospitality sector.

Mr Donnelly said the new rules were designed to keep patrons safe. He said initial reports from last weekend suggested there was a high level of compliance among operators in the night-time economy. An increase in the number of Covid patients in ICU who are vaccinated does not necessarily mean that vaccines are not working, according to consultant in intensive care medicine Dr Catherine Motherway. Speaking on RTÉ’s News at One, Dr Motherway said vaccines protected people from serious illness and death. But there were a group of patients – particularly those in older age groups or with weakened immune systems – who may not benefit as much from the vaccine and may require a booster.

Dr Motherway added that since the first surge of Covid-19, when all scheduled care was deferred, they have, in most hospitals, tried to run scheduled high-risk care at the same time as providing Covid care. Earlier, Green Party leader Eamon Ryan said he did not expect to see the re-imposition of Covid-19 restrictions, despite growing case numbers. Minister Ryan said he believed this view was shared by all present at a meeting of the Cabinet Covid Committee on Tuesday night, attended by the Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan.

The Minister said personal and sectoral responsibility was important to manage the disease. His comments come as the number of people in hospital with Covid-19 topped 500 for the first time since early March.

MONAGHAN CASES

The latest figures for Covid cases show that the incidence rate in County Monaghan per 100,000 population…

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