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'Progress' Ireland on the ‘right track’ to suppress Covid-19 as R number and incidence rate fall

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said the reproductive number of the virus had reduced to about 1.


Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer (Brian Lawless/PA)

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer (Brian Lawless/PA)

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer (Brian Lawless/PA)

Ireland is making progress in the fight against Covid-19 but it is too early to ease efforts to suppress the virus, the chief medical officer has said.

Dr Tony Holohan said the country is one of only four EU member states that had managed to reduce its seven-day incidence of coronavirus, but he said there was more to do.

A further 416 cases of Covid-19 were confirmed by the National Public Health Emergency Team on Saturday.

Five further deaths linked to the virus were also recorded.

Dr Holohan said: “We are making progress in suppressing the current rise of Covid-19.

“Ireland is currently one of only four countries in the EU with a reduction in its seven-day incidence.

“Nationally, our reproductive number has reduced to about 1.0.

“We are working collectively to achieve suppression, but it is too early to ease our efforts. The incidence is decreasing in young adults but it continues to rise in those aged over 75.

“We have more to do but we are on the right track.”

Of the 416 new coronavirus cases notified, 64% were in people under the age of 45.

The median age is 34 years old.

Eighty-seven of the cases were in Dublin, 62 in Cork, 41 in Mayo, 37 in Galway and the remaining 189 cases were spread across 20 other counties.

As of 2pm on Saturday, there were 320 patients with Covid-19 in hospital, including 41 in ICU.

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Ireland’s 14-day incident rate per 100,000 of the population has fallen to 268.7.

Cavan remains the county with the highest 14-day incident rate in the country at 645.9.

Leitrim now has the lowest rate at 118.6 per 100,000 people.

Meanwhile, in Northern Ireland there have been 11 further Covid-19 deaths and 649 new cases of the virus.

There are currently 346 patients with Covid-19 being treated in hospital, including 48 in intensive care.

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