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Outbreaks Tony Holohan says Delta variant rise 'concerning' as strain accounts for 20pc of Covid cases in last week

It previously was put at around 5pc of cases amid hopes that various measures were keeping it at bay

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Dr Tony Holohan

Dr Tony Holohan

Dr Tony Holohan

The more infectious Delta variant is on the rise and accounted for 20pc of new cases of the virus last week.

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan today described the increase as "concerning."

It previously was put at around 5pc of cases amid hopes that various measures were keeping it at bay.

Dr Holohan tweeted that "we have seen a number of outbreaks associated with this variant reported in the last week."

Dr Holohan said the pattern here is similar that seen in a number of other EU member states.

In the UK the variant has been the dominant strain and it is seeing a rise in hospitalisations.

Dr Holohan said: "It is really important that people who are not fully vaccinated continue to follow all public health advice. This includes people who are waiting for their second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine.

He added: "People should take a vaccine when it is offered to them and in the meantime they should continue to avoid crowds, limit contacts, avoid meeting up indoors and work from home where possible."

It comes as the number of patients in hospital with Covid-19 has risen slightly to 53 although the number who are seriously ill in hospital fell to 13.

Another 284 cases of the virus were reported yesterday.

The spread of the Delta variant will be among the factors which Nepht will consider next week when it meets to decide on the next lifting of restrictions from July 5 including indoor dining.

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From July 19 the EU Digital Cert will come into force allowing for travel from here to countries in the EU.

Dr Holohan has already urged people who are not fully vaccinated not to travel.

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