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NPHET warns deaths and hospitalisations will see exponential growth 'if people do nothing'

“Hospitalisations are increasing and we’re sadly seeing people die,” said Professor Philip Nolan.

Professor Philip Nolan
Professor Philip Nolan
Image: RollingNews.ie

HEALTH OFFICIALS ARE warning that deaths from Covid-19 and hospitalisations will see an “exponential growth” if the virus continues spreading at its current rate. 

It comes after NPHET confirmed a further 254 cases of Coronavirus in Ireland, with three new deaths reported.

A total of 136 cases were recorded in Dublin. The county has seen a considerable increase in the number of people infected with Covid-19 in recent weeks.

“I am more concerned than I have been at any point since late April,” said Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of NPHET’s Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group at this evening’s briefing. 

“This disease is spreading rapidly,” said Nolan. 

Ireland’s Reproductive Rate is currently between 1.3 and 1.7, Nolan said this evening.

Four people died from Covid-19 in Ireland in August, he said. To date, 14 people have died in September. 

If Ireland’s R-Number rises to 1.4 – and “if people do nothing”, said Nolan – the country could see 500 – 600 cases per day by 14 October. He stressed that the R-number must be brought to below 1 “by the actions of every person in the country”. 

“Hospitalisations are increasing and we’re sadly seeing people die,” he said. 

Professor Nolan said there has been a progressive increase in Covid-19 cases emerging in older age groups, adding that 10% of cases in the past 14 days had been confirmed in over 65s. 

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Dublin, meanwhile, has seen a sharp increase in cases in recent weeks. Professor Nolan said the capital was reporting 1 – 2 new cases per day – per 100,00 population – and is now reporting 8 – 10 cases per 100,000. 

Professor Nolan said that hospitalisations and deaths will increase exponentially over the coming weeks if people do not change their individual behaviours. 

NPHET is due to meet tomorrow morning to discuss the ongoing situation with a particular focus Dublin. 

It’s anticipated that the county could move to Level 3 of the Government’s five-level plan for ‘Living with Covid’ plan following NPHET’s recommendations as cases continue to rise. 

NPHET’s advice will then be considered by the Covid-19 Cabinet sub-committee on Friday with an announcement due later that day. 

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