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Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan (centre) with Prof Philip Nolan (right) Sasko Lazarov/
nphet briefing

Coronavirus: Eight deaths and 4,929 new cases confirmed in Ireland

The latest figures were confirmed at tonight’s NPHET’s briefing.

LAST UPDATE | 11 Jan 2021

A FURTHER 4,929 new cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed in Ireland, the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) has said this evening.

In a statement, it said that a further eight people confirmed to have Covid-19 have died.

The death toll from Covid-19 in Ireland is 2,352, and the total number of confirmed cases is now at 152,539.

Of the cases notified today:

  • 2,250 are men / 2,641 are women
  • 59% are under 45 years of age
  • The median age is 39 years old
  • 1,513 in Dublin, 695 in Cork, 320 in Limerick, 305 in Wexford, 225 in Galway and the remaining 1,871 cases are spread across all other counties. 

As of 2pm today, 1,582 Covid patients are hospitalised, of which 146 are in ICU. There were 156 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said we are seeing “the first glimmer of hope in respect of our daily case figures and positivity rates” but warned that the situation in hospitals and ICUs around the country continues to worsen day on day.

“We know that hospitalisations occur some weeks after a confirmed case is notified, and mortality after that again. That means we are unfortunately set for a period of time where the situation in our hospitals gets worse before it gets better,” he added.

Dr Michael Power who is the HSE’s Clinical Lead for Intensive Care said: “Over the past weeks, we have seen a swift and sharp spike in admissions into critical care units across the country.

“As of this morning, we have 146 people sadly in ICU. This is nearing the springtime peak of 155 people in critical care. The potential long-term impacts on these patients’ health is stark and significant. ICUs are not where we want anyone to be. They are our very last line of defence against Covid-19. The best way we can protect our ICU capacity and those that work in them is to stay at home.”

Speaking this evening, Dr Power said that if ICU number of people in ICU reaches 400 over the coming weeks, the HSE will keeping building surge capacity in the meantime, adding that there 1,300 nurses with ICU training in addition to the current ICU workforce. 

UK strain

Dr Cillian De Gascun, Medical Virologist and Director of the National Virus Reference Laboratory said further testing of Covid samples indicates that the UK variant continues to account for an increasing number of cases. He said more than 40% of the positive cases tested in the last seven days can be traced back to this variant.

De Gascun said it likely the UK variant will become the dominant strain in Ireland. 

At this evening’s NPHET briefing, Chair of NPHET’S Modelling group Professor Philip Nolan said confirmed Covid-19 cases per day “has begun to stabilise” but warned the full effect on the health service had yet to be seen. 

Almost a quarter of all people hospitalised in Ireland since 20 December have been hospitalised with Covid-19, Professor Nolan said. 

He said there could be 2200-2500 on hospitals and 200-400 in ICU by mid-January “if we do not act to radically reduce transmission and incidence.”

Professor Karina Butler, Chair of the National Immunisation Advisory Committee said the HSE vaccinated more than 35,000 people last week. 
Butler said she understands that a shipment of the Modern vaccine to arrive in Ireland by the end of the week. 

With reporting by Cónal Thomas 

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