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Deadliest day Youngest Covid-19 victim just 19 years old as 101 deaths recorded in one day

The oldest person in the latest group to pass away from Covid-19 was 103 years of age, according to the figures released yesterday.

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Dr Tony Holohan at a Covid -19 update press conference at the Department of Health Dublin. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos Dublin

Dr Tony Holohan at a Covid -19 update press conference at the Department of Health Dublin. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos Dublin

Dr Tony Holohan at a Covid -19 update press conference at the Department of Health Dublin. Photo: Stephen Collins/Collins Photos Dublin

The deadliest day in the pandemic so far saw 101 deaths reported, with the youngest victim of the virus just 19 years old.

The sad toll is set to continue due to the time lag between high numbers of daily cases and fatalities.

The oldest person in the latest group to pass away from Covid-19 was 103 years of age, according to the figures released yesterday.

Among the deaths, 83 occurred in January and 18 in February.

The third wave is breaking more records and the highest death toll in the spring last year was 77, in April.

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said: “This is the highest number of deaths we have reported on any single day of the Covid-19 pandemic so far.

“The high mortality we are experiencing as a country at the moment is related to the surge of infection we saw several weeks ago, and the hospitalisations and admissions to intensive care that followed as a direct result.

“Although we have seen great improvement in the level of infection being reported, we have a long way to go and incidence needs to decline much further.

“The best way to honour those who have died from Covid-19 and those who loved them or provided care for them, is to follow the public health advice.

"Stay at home unless absolutely necessary, and encourage your friends, family and colleagues to do the same,” he said.

“What we can have control over today is the outlook of this disease in the weeks to come. Your positive actions matter, and they add up at a collective level.

"Please keep it up.”

The number of new daily cases of the virus fell to 879, figures not seen since the early weeks of December.

There was also a welcome fall in the numbers of Covid-19 patients in hospital to 1,388 and also a drop of patients in intensive care to 207, but the virus continues to cause major strain on services.

Among the new cases yesterday there were 383 in Dublin, 79 in Cork, 53 in Galway, 40 in Limerick and 43 in Meath, with the remaining 290 cases spread across 20 other
counties.

Meanwhile, a new study from the University of Nottingham reports that researchers have discovered a novel antiviral property of a drug that could have major implications in how future pandemics including Covid-19 are managed.

The study, published in the journal Viruses, shows that thapsigargin is highly effective against Covid-19 virus, a common cold coronavirus, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and the influenza A virus.

Acute respiratory viral infections caused by different viruses are clinically indistinguishable on presentation.

Therefore, a drug that can target different virus types at the same time could significantly improve clinical management.

An antiviral of this type could potentially be made available for community use to control levels of active infection and its spread.

The study is a collaborative project led by Professor Kin-Chow Chang and experts at the University of Nottingham Schools of Veterinary Medicine and Sciences, Biosciences, Pharmacy, Medicine, and Chemistry, and colleagues at the Animal and Plant Health Agency, China Agricultural University and the Pirbright Institute.

In this groundbreaking study, the team of experts found that the plant-derived antiviral, at small doses, triggers a highly effective immune response against three major types of human respiratory viruses, including Covid-19.

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