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Wednesday 4 October 2023 Dublin: 14°C
Leah Farrell
# latest figures
Covid-19: 5,767 positive PCRs, 5,916 positive antigen tests, 979 in hospital and 93 in ICU
The latest figures were confirmed by the Department of Health today.

HEALTH OFFICIALS HAVE reported an additional 5,767 positive PCR cases of Covid-19 in Ireland today.

There were also 5,916 positive antigen tests registered through the HSE website on Monday.

As of 8am this morning, 979 people were in hospital with the virus, 93 of whom were receiving treatment in intensive care.

Yesterday, there were 6,329 cases of Covid-19 reported by PCR, there were 4,810 cases by antigen, with 1,006 people in hospital and 97 in ICU.

Last Wednesday, the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) said that there had been 83 deaths notified in previous seven days, bringing Ireland’s total number of deaths to 6,035.

The latest figures come in the wake of warnings from NPHET that the PCR testing system has been overwhelmed by the volume of the disease in the country in recent weeks, and that the true volume of cases is much higher.

New guidance around close contacts came into effect on Friday, and a HSE system allowing people to register positive antigen tests with the service also went online. As a result, health authorities are now releasing two individual case numbers – laboratory-confirmed PCR results, and self-reported antigen results.

People who test positive via antigen are no longer required to seek a confirmatory PCR test, meaning there may be an artificial decline in these figures.

However, people who test positive via antigen are not entitled to receive a recovery certificate from the HSE. Therefore, some people may opt to get a PCR test after registering their positive antigen, resulting in them being reflected in both sets of figures. 

It is also a possibility that some people who test positive via antigen may not register their results with the HSE. 

Regardless of all the variables now in play, the new rule changes come at the same time as case numbers are expected to decline anyway as the peak of the Omicron wave passes.

In a statement this evening, Mercy University Hospital in Cork said it is experiencing high demand for its emergency department services due to an increase in attendance of acutely ill patients. 

The hospital appealed to people requiring less urgent treatment to avail of other care services where possible. 

People in these circumstances are advised to contact their GP or South Doc, or avail of services at the Mercy Local Injury Unit at St Mary’s Health Campus. 

“Patient care is a priority at MUH and hospital management would like to stress that the
clinical needs of all patients in the Emergency Department are being cared for,” the hospital statement said. 

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