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01 Dec 2021

'Shocking and disappointing' - Covid cases continue to rise with 482 patients now in hospital

'Shocking and disappointing' , Covid cases continue to rise with 482 patients now in hospital

There are now 482 Covid-19 patients in hospital, an increase of 76 since Saturday

There are now 482 Covid-19 patients in hospital, an increase of 76 since Saturday.

Health Service Executive (HSE) CEO Paul Reid has said the number of people hospitalised with Covid-19 has risen by 44% over the last two weeks. It compares to 400 people on this day last week and 333 patients on this day two weeks ago.

The number of patients with Covid-19 in ICU stands at 74.

According to an update from the HSE last night, there were 11 adult public ICU beds left available in the system along with one paediatric ICU bed.

Mr. Reid said:

"Time for us all to hit the reset button. 1. If unvaccinated, you're at higher risk, resulting in a disproportionate impact. Do the right thing. 2. For the rest of us, time to do the basics well again. Both of the above work."

A specialist in infectious diseases Professor Sam McConkey has said that the 'shocking and disappointing' rise in hospitalisations and ICU admissions as a result of Covid-19 is disrupting regular hospital services.

Prof McConkey told RTÉ's Today with Claire Byrne that a quarter of the country's ICU beds are now being used to treat people with Covid-19 which he says "really disrupts the regular care" that can be provided to those who are very ill in Ireland.

He said that the situation is "not a good way to go into winter with flu coming".

Prof McConkey said that we should not see 22 October as "a freedom day" and that ventilation, mask wearing and physical distancing needs to continue in society.

He said that with case numbers as high as they are now, he favoured allowing employees to continue to work from home where possible.

He said that NIAC's position on the provision of booster vaccines is eagerly awaited and that ideally a booster should be provided for everybody but that 'the when and which one is a difficult question'.

His comments come before a meeting of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) later today ahead of the scheduled lifting of restrictions this Friday.

Government is expected to receive NPHET advice before making an announcement later in the week.

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