When Ireland came out of a six-week blockade in December, it had one of the lowest levels of COVID-19 in Europe. Since then, the situation has greatly improved.
The country had the highest infection rates in the world last week, according to Our World in Data, an online scientific publication at the University of Oxford.
In the seven days leading up to January 10, Ireland reported about 1,323 COVID-19 cases per million inhabitants, statistics show more than any other country during the same period.
On Friday, it saw the highest daily increase in infections since the outbreak, with 8,248 new cases, according to the Irish Department of Health said.
“The alarming levels of the disease were unprecedented in terms of our experience with COVID-19 levels in the community,” warned Professor Philip Nolan, member of Ireland’s National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET). We saw the number of patients per day and the number of hospitalizations we could never understand before Christmas. ”
Ireland’s medical experts, politicians and members are debating what happened.
Viral seasons, the presence of a more contagious UK variant and mingling households during the holidays all fuel the trend, according to a spokesperson from Prime Minister Michelle Martin’s office.
A CNN spokesperson said on Tuesday that the sharp increase was not “easy” and that several factors led to it.
“We have more gatherings around Christmas and our public health experts say the virus season is a big factor,” they said.
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Ireland reopened its hospitality services and other sectors with some restrictions on December 4 to defend that decision, a spokesman said, that sectors involved “largely” adhere to public health measures and the incidence of infection. Level “Relatively low” in a hospitality, retail and construction setting.
A more endemic UK breed, first spotted in Ireland on Christmas Day. “Has a big impact. [on] Case growth is believed to be transmissible by more than 50% to 70%, “the spokesman added.
Cillian De Gascun, director of the National Virus Reference Laboratory, said in a statement on Monday about 40% of Ireland’s some positive COVID-19 cases are caused by a contagious UK strain. Easier
As of December 18, Irish households are allowed to mix with the other two, although other European countries have canceled Christmas parties.
More than 54,000 people flew into the Republic of Ireland between December 21 and January 3, the Justice Department said.
“There is no properly managed isolation system,” Gabriel Scaly, chair of the Royal Society of Medicine’s epidemiology and public health, told CNN by phone on Tuesday. “Ireland and the UK are islands that are unsuccessful in terms of COVID. When you look at others, there is a comprehensible desire to be normalcy after Christmas after a difficult year. But the virus did not know that ”
Ireland shut down some restaurants, pubs serving food and shops on Christmas Eve and has since been stricter blocking measures, including closing unnecessary construction sites, schools and supervising services. child
There are now 1,582 COVID-19 cases hospitalized in Ireland, of which 146 are in intensive care, just underneath the 155 peaks this spring.
“We know that our hospitalization came weeks after being informed of confirmed cases and subsequent deaths,” Ireland’s chief medical officer Tony Holohan said in a statement. Statement on Monday “That means we are set at times when the situation in our hospital worsens before it improves.”
Ireland has only five intensive care beds per 100,000 population, which is 12 times lower than the OECD22 average, according to OECD data.
So far, the country has reported a total of more than 152,000 COVID-19 cases and 2,352 deaths.
For the recent rapid increase in tools to deal with. “This accelerated growth rate” is in the hands of Ireland, according to Nolan, who is chairman of the Irish Epidemiological Modeling Advisory Group, NPHET.
He added that he hopes the current measures will “Significantly suppress the spread of the virus”