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The frontline workers at the coalface are ready to do battle against invisible enemy

Those at the coalface of the crisis are changing how they work to protect against Covid-19, writes Wayne O'Connor

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(Stock photo)

(Stock photo)

(Stock photo)

The HSE's war-room in the battle against coronavirus is affectionately known as "that big yella' building next to Heuston" to country folk who regularly get trains to Dublin.

The HSE calls the building Dr Steevens' Hospital after Dr Richard Steevens, an eminent 18th-century physician who bequeathed money to establish a medical facility. In 1803, it was kept under guard to protect the injured victims of an explosion at a nearby ammunition depot prior to the rebellion against British rule. It now serves as the HSE's headquarters but soldiers are back there again this weekend.

Defence Forces cadets in military fatigues are manning phones after contact-tracing methods were ramped up to detect coronavirus carriers. Using information provided by people who have tested positive, the cadets trace recent contacts, explain the nature of the phone call, offer reassurance and ask key questions.