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Highest number of Covid-19 patients in hospital since May with 344 in wards

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Health workers wearing full personal protective equipment (PPE) on the intensive care unit. (Peter Byrne/PA)

Health workers wearing full personal protective equipment (PPE) on the intensive care unit. (Peter Byrne/PA)

Health workers wearing full personal protective equipment (PPE) on the intensive care unit. (Peter Byrne/PA)

There are currently 344 patients in Irish hospitals with Covid-19 this morning, which is the highest figure recorded since May.

Twenty-six people have been admitted to hospital with Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, while nine people were discharged.

There are also 39 people now in intensive care units in the State, with two new admissions.

This figure is also the highest it has been in five months.

115,138 tests have been carried out in the last seven days and the positivity rate has dropped from 6.9pc to 6.2pc in the last week.

A total of 57,128 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in Ireland since the first case in March, while 1,882 people have died with Covid-19.

There were no further deaths and 1,025 new cases confirmed by the Department of Health yesterday.

At last Thursday’s Department of Health Covid-19 briefing, Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan warned that hospitalisations were likely to rise in the coming weeks as they are a delayed sign of increased infection among the population.

Dr Holohan also pointed out that unless community transmission of coronavirus slowed, it would be impossible to protect vulnerable people such as those living in nursing homes.

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Nursing Homes Ireland say that they are currently dealing with 40 outbreaks in nursing homes.

Tadgh Daly, Chief Executive of Nursing Homes Ireland, while speaking on Newstalk, said high levels of community transmission of COVID-19 "pose an existential threat to all nursing homes".

"What we've seen in the early period there were high levels of community transmission and that had very tragic consequences as we all know across the nursing home sector.

"Whereas we saw in July and August, transmission in the community was coming under control, clusters were closing every day.

"But clearly, because of the high levels of community transmission, we're now seeing the clusters going in another direction again which is a very regrettable move."


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