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*Photograph: John Mangan

Co Clare has reported a further 26 cases of COVID-19.

On Tuesday evening, the Department of Health outlined that an additional 1,269 cases of COVID-19 across the entire country. Meath (221) had the highest amount of new cases followed by Dublin (203), Cork (116) and Cavan (80).

Although Co Clare’s incidence rate per 100,000 of population (321.5) remains above the national incidence rare (279.3), it is now the eighth highest across the country having been fourth highest less than a week ago.

Health officials have confirmed that an additional 13 people have had COVID-19 related deaths in the Republic of Ireland. All deaths are said to be recent. From 2pm today, there were 312 COVID-19 patients in Irish hospitals, of this number 34 are in ICU with 13 hospitalisations recorded in the past 24 hours.

Speaking at Tuesday’s press briefing, Chief Medical Officer, Dr Tony Holohan expressed the view that the introduction of fines would curb the non-compliance of individuals with public health guidelines. He highlighted that cases will continue to rise over the next ten days and commented that the country will not have eliminated the virus by Christmas.

A key focus at present is the behaviour of individuals with symptoms or those waiting for results. Dr Holohan stressed that persons must restrict their movements if they are deemed a close contact of an infection or an individual with symptoms. “We have seen a lot of reports of people attending work with symptoms,” he admitted and said such actions cannot continue.

“It is going to big a societal effort,” he stated to get the suppression of the virus back under control.

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