Professor Philip Nolan Eamonn Farrell via

Ireland is coming 'close to suppressing' Covid-19, Philip Nolan says

“We seem to have come close to suppressing what is a very transmissible virus,” he said.

IRELAND SEEMS TO be coming close to suppressing Covid-19, Professor Philip Nolan has said. 

Speaking to RTÉ’s News at One, the chair of NPHET’s Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group said “we’re in a good place” in relation to the lifting of the remaining Covid-19 restrictions by 22 October. 

“There’s nothing in the numbers at the moment that would change the advice that NPHET would have given the government towards the end of August,” Nolan said. 

He said the suppression of the virus is down to the precautions the population is making and the high levels of vaccination.

“We’re fortunate with our very high level of vaccinations and frankly the very sensible manner in which each and every one of us is taking the precautions,” Nolan said. 

“We seem to have come close to suppressing what is a very transmissible virus,” he said. 

Nolan said Ireland is living with the aftermath of what was “a very large wave of infection in the 16-34 age group” during the summer months, when the population was partially vaccinated. 

“We’re living with the aftermath of that force of infection right now. The cases we’re seeing today are essentially the residual of that,” he said. 

There will be a “long final act” of the pandemic, Nolan suggested, “given the level of circulating virus in the world”. 

“I think we are going to be seeing cases of this infection for many months to come,” he said. 

However, he added: “I think it’s an important message here that people should not be fearful. I’m worried about people who consider themselves vulnerable, who may, at this point, still be really concerned about their own safety. 

“I think the message is don’t be fearful, be careful. 

“The risks are very much reduced because of vaccination. We can reduce the risk further if we can keep case numbers down. This is the time to see this as a long, slow final phase.”

Public health officials have this evening confirmed a further 1,124 new cases of Covid-19 in Ireland.

As of 8am this morning, 349 patients with Covid-19 were in hospital, including 65 in ICU. 

Deaths are being announced weekly due to the HSE data breach in May – as of Wednesday, 5,249 people have died with Covid-19 in Ireland. 

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