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Coronavirus Ireland 337 new cases of Covid confirmed as Tony Holohan warns of a potential spike in cases

Death figures relating to Covid-19 are not being published by the Department of Health presently due to the ransomware attack

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Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer at the Department of Health (Brian Lawless/PA)

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer at the Department of Health (Brian Lawless/PA)

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer at the Department of Health (Brian Lawless/PA)

There have been 337 new cases of Covid-19 confirmed by the Department of Health this evening.

There are currently 89 people in Irish hospitals with the virus, of which 34 are in intensive care settings.

Death figures relating to Covid-19 are not being published by the Department of Health presently due to the ransomware attack that has crippled large parts of the HSE’s IT system.

Case figures may be subject to change in future once the data can be validated within the HSE’s computer systems.

HSE Chief Paul Reid today said that the reduced numbers in hospitals are a testament to continued adherence of public health guidelines and the effectiveness of the vaccination programme.

“A clear demonstration of the effectiveness of vaccinations & continued public support. Let's celebrate the positives too, whilst highlighting risks,” Mr Reid said on Twitter.

There is still a risk of a further spike in Covid-19 case numbers with a knock-on increase in hospitalisations, chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan has warned.

He delivered the warning in his letter to Health Minister Stephen Donnelly in advance of last week's announcements on reopening in June and July.

He said that "no assurance can be given that the Covid-19 disease profile will remain similar to that experienced over recent weeks."

While modelling projections continue to suggest that the easing of measures proposed in June, with a focus on outdoor activities, can be considered low-to-medium risk, there are greater uncertainties in relation to the medium-term position and the impact of a greater level of indoor social mixing across the population.

Depending on the relative transmissibility of the UK variant "modelling projections show that there is still a risk of a further spike in case numbers, with a corresponding increase in hospitalisations," he added.

The letter written after a Nphet meeting assessed the overall Covid-19 situation said as of Wednesday last 79pc of cases had occurred in people under 45 years of age in the previous 14 days. And 3pc were aged 65 years and older. The median age for cases notified in the same period is 27 years.

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