Eight more people with COVID-19 have died

NPHET recommends face mask campaign
  • Deborah Condon

Eight more people with COVID-19 have died in the Republic.

One death that had previously been classed as COVID-related has been denotified, so the total number of deaths here is now 1,703.

Eight new cases of the virus have also been confirmed, bringing the total number of cases here to 25,238. This is the lowest number of new cases reported since March 11.

Currently, there are 86 patients with confirmed COVID-19 in hospital, including 28 cases in ICU.

According to Prof Philip Nolan, chair of the National Public Health Emergency Team's (NPHET) Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, the reproductive number of the virus has remained stable, between 0.4 and 0.8, over a number of weeks.

The reproductive number represents how many people the average person with the virus is likely to infect in a completely susceptible population. The higher this number, the faster the disease spreads. For example, a reproductive number of three means that each person with the virus is likely to infect three others. A reproductive number of one means they are likely to infect one other person.

"The next two weeks are now critical in limiting transmission, keeping the r-number low and suppressing the virus. It is how we interact as we go about our daily lives more freely that will determine whether the r-number increases," Prof Nolan commented.

Meanwhile, according to the Department of Health's chief medical officer and NPHET chairperson, Dr Tony Holohan, NPHET met today to continue its review of Ireland's response to the virus, and has recommended a new campaign to focus on face coverings.

"NPHET has recommended the development and implementation of a national communications campaign to increase compliance with current recommendations on the use of face coverings.

"The campaign will outline best practice for use of face coverings in retail outlets, on public transport and in other public locations, where it may be difficult to maintain social distancing," Dr Holohan said.

Phase 2 of the Government's plan for reopening society and business is now in place. For more information on this, click here.


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