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Tuesday 21 March 2023 Dublin: 10°C
Sasko Lazarov/
# daily update
Coronavirus: 60 deaths and 3,231 new cases confirmed in Ireland
“A significant percentage of the population – in excess of 1 in 10 in some counties – is currently either a case or a close contact.”

PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS have confirmed a further 3,231 cases of Covid-19 in Ireland, with the chief medical officer saying that the virus has “taken root in every single part of the country”.

The National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) has reported that 60 more people have died with Covid-19.

59 of the deaths occurred in January 2021 and one occurred in December 2020.

The latest figures bring the total number of confirmed cases in Ireland to 169,780 and the death toll to 2,595.

Of the cases notified today:

  • 1,465 are men and 1,712 are women
  • 54% are under 45 years of age
  • The median age is 42 years old
  • 931 cases are in Dublin, 388 in Cork, 238 in Louth, 155 in Waterford, 151 in Limerick, and the remaining 1,368 cases are spread across all other counties.

As of 2pm today, 1,854 patients with a confirmed case of Covid-19 are hospitalised, of whom 191 are in ICU.

119 additional hospitalisations have been made in the last 24 hours. 

Validation of data at the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HSPC) has led to one death and seven cases that were previously confirmed being identified, which is reflected in the current running totals of cases and deaths.

Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan said that the virus has “taken root in every single part of the country”.

“A significant percentage of the population – in excess of 1 in 10 in some counties – is currently either a case or a close contact,” Dr Holohan said.

When you consider that a significant percentage of our daily cases will directly lead to hospitalisation and mortality, the urgency with which we need to act becomes clear.The improvements in cases is not happening fast enough. Too many people are still not complying as fully as we need with the advice. There are early indications that we may be levelling off in terms of improvement, but at far, far too high a level of infection.

Dr Holohan said the spread of the variant from the UK is “likely making our challenge more difficult”.

“Please follow the public health advice. The safest place at the moment is at home. Please stay at home,” he asked.

The national 14-day incidence rate of Covid-19 in Ireland is now at 1,530.2 per 100,000 people.

In Dublin, where 931 new cases were confirmed today, the incidence rate is 1775.7 per 100,000.

Longford reported the fewest new cases of any county today, with just five new cases confirmed in today’s figures.

Director of the National Virus Reference Laboratory Dr Cillian De Gascun said that it is “inevitable” that the variant from the UK will become the dominant variant in Ireland.

De Gascun said that the UK variant has adapted to us: simply put, it is better at moving from person to person when we come into contact”.

“So what we must do is reduce its opportunities to spread by cutting out socialising. Stay home. Do not visit anyone else’s home. Do not attend illegal gatherings,” he said.

Remember the simple and effective measures from springtime – wash your hands well and often, wear a mask, cough and sneeze into your elbow, keep two metres of space from others, and phone your GP at the very first sign of Covid-19 symptoms.”

Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said that in hindsight the government would not have chosen to relax Covid-19 restrictions as much as it did in December.

Speaking to Virgin Media News, Martin said that “in hindsight, knowing what we know now, would we have done what we did a month ago? Obviously not.”

“Nobody predicted, in any model, the level of community transmission that we’re currently experiencing,” Martin said.

“But at the time we were coming out of a six-week Level 5 series of restrictions. That was preceded by a Level 3 max series of restrictions.”

Yesterday, there were 50 deaths and 3,498 new cases confirmed in Ireland.

Deaths of people with Covid-19 are not reported in real time but may have occurred over a period of several days.

The number of deaths reported on a given day, therefore, does not necessarily mean that a person with Covid-19 died within the previous 24-hour period or even the preceding few days.

In the early days of the pandemic, Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan urged families, despite the difficulty, to register their loved ones deaths as early as possible so that health officials could gain an accurate picture of mortality.

Essentially, there is a delay between when a person dies from Covid-19 and the National Public Health Emergency Team being informed of their passing.

Additional reporting by Cónal Thomas

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