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Dublin West is worst hit area for cases of Covid-19

127 positive tests over the last two weeks

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Shoppers in Liffey Valley shopping centre at the beginning of the pandemic. West Dublin is now Dublin’s Covid-19 hotspot

Shoppers in Liffey Valley shopping centre at the beginning of the pandemic. West Dublin is now Dublin’s Covid-19 hotspot

Colin Keegan

Shoppers in Liffey Valley shopping centre at the beginning of the pandemic. West Dublin is now Dublin’s Covid-19 hotspot

Dublin West is the capital's Covid-19 hotspot, it emerged yesterday.

There were 127 people in the highly populated area of the city who tested positive for the virus in the two weeks up to Tuesday.

Other areas badly hit are Dublin North Central, Dublin North-West and the south inner city

Dublin again suffered the highest number of new cases of the virus yesterday with a further 51 new infections.

Nationally, the spread of the virus remains high and overall 95 more people were diagnosed with the virus, up from 89 the previous day.

A report from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) showed 15 patients over the age of 65 across the country were recently admitted to hospital for Covid-19.

It comes amid rising concern about the resurgence in the number of over-75s in particular who have been struck by the virus.

During the same two weeks, four children who tested positive had to be hospitalised.

Worst

Dublin was the worst hit yesterday, followed by six cases in Kildare and six cases in Meath.

The other 32 cases are in Carlow, Clare, Cork, Kerry, Kilkenny, Laois, Limerick, Longford, Louth, Mayo, Offaly, Tipperary, Waterford, Westmeath, Wexford and Wicklow.

A gap between the east and west of the country is now emerging.

In the last two weeks of August the lowest incidence of the virus was in Cork, Kerry, Galway, Mayo and Roscommon.

A high incidence was seen in Dublin, Kildare and parts of Wicklow, as well as in Carlow, Tipperary, Waterford and Wexford.

The National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) which advises the Government met yesterday and will convene again next week to see if current restrictions need to be extended or strengthened.

Yesterday, Dr Colm Henry of the HSE said now is not the time for the reopening of 'wet pubs' in light of the trajectory of the disease, the start of the school year and the rise in cases among older people.

A separate report from the HPSC showed most outbreaks of the virus continue to be in private homes and 377 of these were still open as of last Saturday.

There were no open outbreaks related to a pub and five were linked to a restaurant or cafe.

Another 14 were associated with foreign travel.

A number of outbreaks of the virus have also arisen among vulnerable groups, including the Roma community, homeless and residents in Direct Provision centres.

Acting chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn said yesterday the "virus relies on human contact. The virus has not changed and neither have the basic measures that keep us all protected".

"It is these basic measures that are most important to keep COVID-19 under control.

"Remember to wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, to know the safe way to wear a face covering, avoid touching your face, cough into your elbow, reduce your social contacts and keep a physical distance of two metres at the top of your mind when you do meet others."

The HSE earlier revealed resistance by large numbers of people referred for testing to turn up at swab centres.

Between 750 to 1,000 people a day, depending on referrals, may not be showing up at the swab centre. A significant number are close contacts of somebody who has already tested positive for Covid-19.

The turnout is as low as 50pc for the second test they should have seven days later. It means a proportion of people who have the virus are not getting tested and could be a risk to others unless they self isolate.

More than one in two of those who tested positive in the two weeks up to Tuesday were close contacts of a confirmed case.

Infection

The figures show that 813 people found out they were positive after being contacted by a tracing team.

Over the same two weeks, as many as 321 who tested positive for the virus did not know the source of the infection.

This highlights the problem of community transmission - which is the most difficult to track.

Meanwhile, Nursing Homes Ireland yesterday urged people visiting nursing homes to maintain heightened vigilance following reports of an increase in Covid-19 cases among older and vulnerable age groups.

CEO Tadhg Daly said more care must be taken around nursing home visits.


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