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Phase One easing to go ahead from Monday, 16 new deaths announced: Today's Covid-19 main points

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced plans for Phase One reopening this afternoon.

A man runs past a new mural in Dublin's city centre inspired by the new HSE 'Hold Firm' campaign - which took its inspiration from a poem by President of Ireland Michael D Higgins.
A man runs past a new mural in Dublin's city centre inspired by the new HSE 'Hold Firm' campaign - which took its inspiration from a poem by President of Ireland Michael D Higgins.
Image: PA Images

Updated May 15th 2020, 9:44 PM

TAOISEACH LEO VARADKAR has today announced that Phase One of lifting Covid-19 restrictions will begin next week. 

Construction and other outdoor workers are among those who can return to work from Monday, while retail outlets, including hardware stores and garden centres are also permitted to reopen. 

This evening, the Department of Health confirmed a further 16 deaths from Covid-19 along with 129 new cases of the virus in Ireland.

Abroad, some countries, including South Korea and Germany have rolled back on easing restrictions following a spike in infections. 

Here are today’s main Covid-19 points:

  • Phase One of lifting Covid-19 restrictions will begin on Monday.
  • The Department of Health has this evening confirmed a further 16 deaths from Covid-19 along with 129 new cases of the virus in Ireland.
  • Health officials are investigating how one hospital in the country failed to report over 200 cases of Covid-19, dating from as far back as mid-March, until last night’s reported figures.
  • HSE’s Paul Reid expressed concern over last month’s announcement by the NPHET that testing for Covid-19 would be increased to cover 100,000 suspected cases a week.
  • The issue of women who are returning from maternity leave not being eligible for the government’s Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme has been referred to the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.
  • Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe has said that the huge budgetary deficit the country is incurring as a result of the Covid-19 crisis will have to be addressed in the future.
  • Religious leaders have met with the Taoiseach to discuss how places of worship across the country can be re-opened over the next few months.
  • Unions have warned that workers within the meat processing industry have not been sufficiently protected from the Covid-19 outbreak.
  • Most Irish people don’t expect life to return to ‘normal’ until next year, according to a new survey examining the public’s views on the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • The Irish Greyhound Board has questioned by horse racing is set to be permitted from 8 June, but not greyhound racing. CEO Frank Nyhan said he was “at a loss” to understand the distinction. 

Here are today’s international Covid-19 points:

  • The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention has issued an alert about a serious rare inflammatory condition in children linked to Covid-19.
  • Some countries have already reimposed restrictions after lifting them – we take a look at these cases, ahead of Ireland heading down that route. 
  • Hydroxychloroquine, a drug backed by Donald Trump, does not help treat Covid-19 according to new research.

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In this week’s episode of The Explainer, we discuss the mysterious syndrome linked to Covid-19 that’s affecting children. You can listen here:


Source: The Explainer/SoundCloud

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