R-number remains high in Ireland

People urged to reduce contacts
  • Deborah Condon

The reproduction number of the COVID-19 virus remains high in Ireland, at between 1.5 and 1.7, the chair of NPHET's Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group has warned.

According to Prof Philip Nolan, while the 14-day incidence and daily incidence have stopped rising in the last few days, "it is too early to conclude that there has been any change in the pattern of disease".

"If we are starting to suppress the virus again, it is essential that we maintain this effort - limit our social contacts and limit mixing between households. The next 10 days are critical," he insisted.

A further 234 cases of the virus were confirmed on Wednesday evening, bringing the total number of cases to 33,675. A further two deaths were also confirmed, brining the total number of deaths to 1,794.

Of the 234 cases, 103 were in Dublin, 30 in Donegal, 22 in Galway and 21 in Cork.

"The single most important thing that people all across the country need to do now is to reduce their social contacts. We all need to cut down on discretionary social activities. Meeting fewer people means fewer opportunities for the virus to transmit.

"Please prioritise who you choose to meet and try to keep your social network as small as possible," urged the acting chief medical officer, Dr Ronan Glynn.

According to the HSE's chief clinical officer, Dr Colm Henry, earlier in the pandemic, the people of Ireland succeeded in flattening the curve "through a common purpose and solidarity".

"Now, we face the more difficult task of suppressing the virus again while trying to protect education and healthcare settings.

"Every time you reduce your contacts, avoid a crowd, choose to meet outdoors, or remember to keep your distance, know that you are a part of the frontline that protects our doctors, nurses, healthcare workers, and other staff working hard for us all in the Irish healthcare system," Dr Henry said.

For more information on the Government's five-level COVID plan, including the restrictions that apply to your county, click here.

 


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