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Public urged to keep guard up as Covid-19 cases fall

Health officials last night confirmed 552 new cases of Covid-19 in Ireland and two more deaths.

HSE CEO Paul Reid
HSE CEO Paul Reid
Image: Leon Farrell

PEOPLE HAVE BEEN urged not to drop their guard as the number of new Covid-19 cases has remained below 1,000 per day for the past seven days. 

Health officials last night confirmed 552 new cases of Covid-19 in Ireland and two more deaths. 

Over the past seven days, there has been a total of 4,880 cases of Covid-19 reported, compared with 7,166 cases reported over the previous seven days. 

The country has been under Level 5 restrictions since 21 October. Public Health officials, however, have urged caution. 

Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan indicated on Saturday that the country is making progress in the fight against Covid-19 but it is too early to ease efforts to suppress the virus.

The number of people in ICU with Covid-19 continues to rise.

Screenshot 2020-11-02 at 09.14.26 - Display 2 Source: Department of Health

HSE CEO Paul Reid said yesterday that there were “continued signs of encouragement” last week including Ireland’s positivity rate reducing to 5.2%.

However, Reid warned that hospital and ICU cases are not yet declining. “Please let’s keep our guard and resilience for the coming weeks as we aim to avoid the trend in Europe and the UK,” he said. 

Latest figures show there are 325 people hospitalised with Covid-19 in Ireland. There are currently 44 people being treated in ICU – the highest figure since 29 May. 

Schools are re-opening today after the mid-term break. 

The HSE last week sought to reassure parents that the rate of transmission in schools remains low. 

The number of school-aged children who have tested positive for Covid-19 is “relatively stable”, increasing slightly from 14.5% of cases in August before the schools reopened to 15.6% of cases in October, public health consultant Dr Abigail Collins said.  

Dr Collins said the data collected by public health teams is “reassuring” and has shown “schools are safe places for our children to be”.

The NTA, meanwhile, has warned that the return of schools today is “likely to give rise to additional pressure” on public transport services as capacity remains reduced to 25% due to Level 5 restrictions.

The NTA said public transport should only be used for essential journeys and that customers should avoid peak travel times.

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The problem is most acute on buses early in the morning, particularly in the Dublin region, the NTA said. 

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