*Testing samples being taken at Cusack Park. Photograph: John Mangan
There has been no increase of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Clare for 24 hours while an additional 12 deaths and 236 new cases recorded across the country.
Number of COVID-19 related deaths continue to drop in the Republic of Ireland. On Sunday, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) was informed that a further 12 lives had been claimed by the virus. To date, there has been 1,458 COVID-19 related deaths in the country.
236 new cases were recorded as of 11am on Sunday by the HPSC. Since the outbreak of the virus, 22,996 individuals have received a positive diagnosis.
In Clare, the figure of confirmed cases remains at 303 as of Friday. Despite large increases during the week, the stagnant number for 24 hours will be welcomed. The total does not include patients that have recovered from the virus nor those waiting for test results.
From Friday’s 22,671 cases, the gender breakdown remains at 57% female and 43% male with a median age of 49. 2,986 individuals have been hospitalised with 383 admitted to ICU. 6,771 cases are associated with healthcare workers.
Speaking on Sunday morning, HSE Chief Executive Paul Reid flagged that the cost of setting up a long-term testing and tracing system would be significant. The cost of supplying personal personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Irish healthcare system each year would be €1bn, he said.
Reid stated that testing of all 30,000 staff and 28,000 residents in nursing homes had now been completed and the focus was now moving to disability and mental health facilities. There are 12 outbreaks in Direct Provision Centres, involving 149 cases and a very low number of cases in prisons – five outbreaks, involving 17 cases.
Testing capacity on the week beginning May 18th within the HSE would be for 100,000 according to Reid.
Cancer services, time dependent surgery and the National Treatment Purchase Fund are to be prioritised to maximise use of private hospitals.
Three priorities had been set out – cancer services, time dependent surgery – such as cardiovascular surgery, neurosurgery and transplants and using the National Treatment Purchase Fund to maximise the use of private hospitals.