Number Of COVID-19 Patients In Irish Intensive Care Hits Pandemic High

Two workers at St Luke's Hospital in Kilkenny die from Covid-19

New data released by the Our World in Data organisation has shown that Ireland now has the highest number of new Covid cases per million people, surpassing the UK, US, and Portugal.

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre has today, Monday, January 11 been notified of 8 additional deaths related to COVID-19.

Sadly, a further 22 deaths have also been reported up north (though four of these deaths occurred outside the 24 hour period).

Attributing the rise in deaths to "unsustainably" high levels of infection, Dr Holohan called on people to stay home "out of respect for those who have lost their lives" or were in hospital.

There have also been 3,086 new cases reported this evening- Galway is topping the list with 604 cases, 574 in Dublin and 466 in Mayo. But the surge in infections in late December and early January on Tuesday pushed numbers in intensive care above the mid-April peak of 155.

Dr Ronan Glynn, deputy chief medical officer, said at least one in three patients admitted to hospital or critical care this month have been under the age of 65. This clearly demonstrates that Covid-19 affects us all, regardless of age or underlying condition. This afternoon, Paul Reid of the HSE tweeted to say that the situation in hospitals is 'now beyond strain.' He told the public that 'to avoid getting sick, protect your family & healthcare workers please, please stay at home'.

Mr Reid tweeted: "Nobody wants more people sick with Covid-19. Not only will you keep yourself and your loved ones safe, but also help avoid more preventable Covid-19 admissions to our now struggling healthcare system".

"Basically we're on now a rollercoaster whereby we have exponential doubling of the numbers into hospital, doubling of numbers into ICU". We have patients in their 80s.

Cork University Hospital has the largest number of Covid patients, with 135 hospitalised.

The health chiefs said several trusts had already had to stand down all but the most urgent elective surgery, including some red-flag cancer surgery, to redeploy staff to meet the urgent and immediate needs of extremely ill patients needing ICU care.

Today's update comes after the EU Commission confirmed that AstraZeneca has finally applied for EU approval of their COVID-19 vaccine.

"The Covid-19 vaccines provide the long-term hope and the current lockdown offers the opportunity to shorten the duration of the current surge", they added.

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