*Photograph: John Mangan
20 new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Co Clare as the incidence rate of the virus continues to rise in the county.
Health officials announced a total of 1,546 new cases in the country on Tuesday, 20 of which are located in Clare. 444 are in Dublin, 203 in Cork, 111 in Louth, 87 in Limerick, 85 in Donegal and the remaining 596 cases are spread across all other counties. The total figure is the largest announced on a single day in the country.
A further increase in the 14 day incidence rate per 100k of the population has been observed in Clare. The figure is now 147.3 and is below the national equivalent of 245.6.
An additional nine deaths have been alerted to the Health Protection Surveillance Centre bringing the death toll to 2,213.
Hospital figures from 2pm on Tuesday outline that 411 COVID-19 patients are in Irish hospitals, 34 of these are in ICU. There have been 47 hospitalisations over the past 24 hours.
79 year old Annie Lynch became the first person living in the Republic of Ireland to receive the COVD-19 vaccine. “Many nurses and midwives will be among the first to receive the vaccine so we can continue to provide care to all our patients. It is vital however to support them and all our frontline staff by continuing to adhere to the public health measures advised as the vaccine programme rolls out,” Chief Nursing Officer with the Department of Health, Rachel Kenna commented.
Priority groups will be the focus of the national vaccination programme, the Chief Medical Officer stated on Tuesday. Dr Tony Holohan reminded the public that following health advice is “our only means to suppress the spread of the virus in the community”.