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Over 2 million confirmed cases globally, a further 38 Irish deaths: Today's Covid-19 main points

A total of 12,547 people have been diagnosed with Covid-19 in Ireland.

An empty High Street in Cologne this morning.
An empty High Street in Cologne this morning.
Image: Oliver Berg/DPA/PA Images

Updated Apr 15th 2020, 6:52 PM

HEALTH OFFICIALS HAVE this evening confirmed that a further 38 people diagnosed with Covid-19 have died in Ireland. 

Officials also confirmed that 657 new cases were reported by Irish labs, while German labs testing the Irish backlog reported a further 411 cases. 

In all, 444 people have now died from Covid-19 in Ireland and there are 12,547 confirmed cases. 

Internationally, Donald Trump has suspended funding to the World Health Organization and rejected claims he’s acting “like a king” over his plans to reopen States.

Here are today’s Covid-19 main points:

  • Health officials have confirmed that a further 38 people diagnosed with Covid-19 have died in Ireland.
  • The IMF predicts that Ireland’s economy could shrink by 6.8% this year, but should bounce back by around 6.3% next year.
  • It also says unemployment numbers could reach 12% this year, and stay at around 8% next year.
  • Telecoms providers such as Eir, Sky and Tesco Ireland are offering increased supports to customers during the pandemic, including engaging with customers in financial difficulty to agree the best way to keep them connected and potentially upgrading those who only have limited broadband usage.
  • A new domestic violence campaign ad is telling victims that support “is still here” despite the pandemic.
  • The Finance Minister has announced changes to the wage subsidy scheme that will see the State pay up to 85% of wages for lower paid workers. 
  • Here’s why our positive Covid-19 numbers from Irish labs and those from a German lab are reported separately.
  • Restrictions on movement in Northern Ireland will remain in place until at least May, Stormont’s health minister Robin Swann has said. 
  • Senior civil servant Elizabeth Canavan said efforts are being made to keep parks and nature reserves open as much as possible. She said most people are complying with social distancing guidelines but “there are limits to what activities are allowed at this time”. As an example, she said fishing and canoeing in places like the Lakes of Killarney are not allowed as they could result in additional pressure on emergency services.
  • Two new primary care centres are opening in Rialto, Dublin 8 and Bray, Co Wicklow, in an effort to boost primary healthcare capacity. The Rialto centre will be used as a community assessment hub for the virus from today.
  • A woman is due to appear in court this morning charged with spitting on a garda in Cabra yesterday.
  • US Ticketmaster has changed its refund policy for rescheduled events – but Ireland hasn’t followed suit.
  • To ensure continuity of the delivery and distribution of goods, the Road Safety Authority and the Department of Transport have agreed to further extend the relaxation of some EU driving and resting time rules for heavy goods vehicle operators and drivers. This extension will apply to all HGV operators and drivers who are subject to the EU drivers hours on tapograph rules and who are engaged in the carriage of all goods including oil supplies until 31 May.
  • School transport providers – who were paid 50% up to the originally scheduled Easter break – will have these arrangements reviewed at the end of the week.
  • The National Library of Ireland is asking members of the public to nominate websites and digital resources they think should be retained in the National Library’s archive as a record at this time in Irish life, websites that will be archived include those that capture the major efforts across government, health sector and Irish society to combat the pandemic.
  • Inclusion Ireland has called for immediate government and HSE action to address the latest figures. 

Here are today’s Covid-19 main international points:

  • There are now over two million Covid-19 confirmed cases around the world, according to Johns Hopkins University in the US. 
  • US President Donald Trump has said he has ordered that funding be suspended to the World Health Organization, citing a failure to call out China’s lack of transparency as a reason. In January, Trump himself had praised China for its transparency in response to the virus.
  • The move from Trump has been criticised by former WHO directors, Tánaiste Simon Coveney, top EU diplomats and the German foreign minister.
  • Trump also said lockdown US states could reopen soon, comparing some governors to traitorous sailors from the film Mutiny on the Bounty.
  • The US also recorded its highest daily death toll of 2,228 yesterday, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University.
  • Downing Street said the UK was not planning to follow the US in withholding funds from the World Health Organisation.
  • Across the UK, 4,605 more cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed along with another 761 deaths in hospital from the virus. 
  • A further 84 deaths from coronavirus have been registered in Scotland in the last 24 hours bringing the total to 699, while confirmed cases has reached 6,748.
  • The IMF said yesterday that the world is “very likely” to experience its worst recession in 90 years.
  • A UK watchdog has said two million jobs could be lost during the Covid-19 crisis.
  • A heavily pregnant nurse who had tested positive for Covid-19 has died in the UK, Channel 4 has reported
  • Spain has recorded a further 523 new deaths from coronavirus, while the number of new confirmed cases has risen by more than 5,000 in the past 24 hours. 
  • Other 17,000 people have now died in France from Covid-19, a top health official has said. 
  • Periods of social distancing may needed into 2022, Harvard researchers say.
  • A 99-year-old British war veteran who challenged himself to walk 100 lengths of his garden has raised more than £6 million for the NHS.
  • Danish schools are beginning to reopen today following a month-long closure.
  • Some shops have also started to reopen in Italy.
  • The restoration of Notre Dame has been halted by the coronavirus one year after the blaze.
  • An Australian man who reportedly snuck out of quarantine to visit his girlfriend has been jailed for a month and has become the first person to be imprisoned under the country’s lockdown laws.
  • New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern has taken a pay cut as the virus hits the country’s economy.
  • Body coach Joe Wicks has claimed a Guinness World Record for his online fitness class, which has trebled in subscribers during the pandemic.

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With reporting from Hayley Halpin, Órla Ryan, PA, AFP

About the author:

Sean Murray

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