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Roadmap to reopen Ireland due Friday as 62 cases confirmed in Direct Provision centres: Today's Covid-19 Main Points

Here are the main points to know about Covid-19 in Ireland and around the world today.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/RollingNews.ie

Updated Apr 30th 2020, 7:00 PM

A FURTHER 42 people in Ireland have died as a result of Covid-19, health officials confirmed this evening.

It brings the total number of deaths in Ireland, including probable deaths, to 1,232.

Additionally, 359 new cases of Covid-19 were announced, bringing the total number of confirmed cases here past the 20,000 mark to 20,612.

Speaking in the Daíl this afternoon, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar said he plans to have the roadmap for lifting the restrictions ready for approval by Cabinet tomorrow.

Varadkar said there would be a number of phases, with two to four weeks between each phase. 

He went on to outline the five criteria to be taken on board when considering the lifting of restrictions: Progress of disease; healthcare capacity/resilience; testing and contact tracing capacity; shielding at-risk groups; risk of secondary morbidity and mortality. 

The Taoiseach will also appear on RTÉ’s The Late Late Show tomorrow night to provide the latest update on Ireland’s actions to tackle the crisis. 

Internationally, South Korea has reported no new locally transmitted coronavirus cases, the first time no infections have been recorded since the disease was detected in the country more than 70 days ago.

The country has seen 10,765 cases since its first infection was reported on February 18.

For a time it had the world’s second-largest outbreak before the spread was brought under control through widespread testing and a contact-tracing drive, along with widely observed social distancing.

Here are today’s main Covid-19 points:

  • Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said he plans to have the roadmap for lifting the restrictions ready for approval by Cabinet tomorrow.
  • Lockdown regulations do not need to be amended to prevent day-trippers from Northern Ireland travelling to the Republic, the Taoiseach has said after consulting the Attorney General. He said instead, the gardaí and the PSNI need to co-operate to enforce laws on both sides of the border. 
  • Health officials confirmed that 62 cases of Covid-19 among residents at Direct Provision centres, with nine clusters. 
  • Pregnant healthcare staff should not be working with confirmed or suspected Covid-19 patients, the HSE has said – a major shift from previous advice issued at the end of March.
  • Banks are expecting to extend the Covid-19 mortgage payment break beyond the initial three-month period.
  • Ticket-selling company Ticketmaster has changed its terms and conditions for refunded tickets for rescheduled events, saying it will no longer refund service fees.
  • Dublin City Council has said that there has been an “unprecedented and unacceptable” increase in illegal dumping of household waste and other items since the shutdown was announced.
  • Minister for Business Heather Humphreys has announced that applications are now open for the new Enterprise Ireland €2 million Covid-19 online retail scheme to support retail companies to enhance their digital capability. Applications are open until 27 May. 
  • The Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland announces €17.5m in new lower-cost funding for SMEs throughout Ireland.
  • Rescue services have asked the public not to engage in any water-based activity on or in the sea ahead of the bank holiday weekend while current Covid-19 restrictions remain in place. 
  • 79% of Irish adults say they would feel unsafe going to a pub or restaurant if the lockdown ended tomorrow vs 57% who would feel unsafe returning to work, according to an online survey carried out by Spark Market Research. 
  • The Irish government has co-signed a letter with a number of EU countries asking for the European Commission to change the rules on how airline passengers can be refunded for cancelled flights.

Here are today’s international Covid-19 points:

  • US President Donald Trump has said the federal government will not be extending its coronavirus social distancing guidelines once they expire on Thursday.
  • UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson promised a “comprehensive plan” in his first press conference since recovering from Covid-19.
  • The University of Oxford has partnered with pharmaceutical giant AstraZenenca for the development, manufacture and large-scale distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine candidate that is currently being trialled in the UK.
  • The Swedish university town of Lund will spread foul-smelling chicken fertiliser in its main park this week to deter revellers holding spring celebrations as part of efforts to curb the coronavirus outbreak.
  • South Korea reported zero new locally transmitted coronavirus cases today, the first time no infections have been recorded since the disease was detected in the country more than 70 days ago.
  • New York police were called to a Brooklyn neighbourhood yesterday after a funeral home overwhelmed by the coronavirus resorted to storing dozens of bodies on ice in rented trucks, officials said.
  • Coronavirus cases in Russia have surged past 100,000, with an increase of 7,099 confirmed infections in the last 24 hours, the government’s coronavirus information site said in a daily update.
  • Italy announced a slew of measures to try to save its economy as it faces a shrinkage of 10% this year. 
  • The US Office of the Director of National Intelligence has said that Covid-19 was “not man-made or genetically modified”. 
  • The World Health Organization said that to keep other infectious diseases in check, vaccination programmes must remain a priority even during the coronavirus pandemic.

About the author:

Adam Daly

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