Concern of Mid-West Covid numbers

Concern of Mid-West Covid numbers


The Department of Public Health Mid-West is reporting an increase in COVID-19 outbreaks in workplaces in Limerick and across the Mid-West following a sharp increase in the incidence rate in recent weeks. 

In the past two weeks, Public Health Mid-West has recorded 858* new COVID-19 cases in Limerick, 65 in Clare, and 40 in North Tipperary.

The current 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 population is 440.2 in Limerick, 56.1 in North Tipperary, and 54.7 in Clare.

Our department is currently investigating COVID-19 situations in 37 workplaces in the Mid-West, involving more than 10 outbreaks, 128 cases, and an estimated 270 close contacts. The vast majority of these workplaces are in Limerick.

Public Health Mid-West is working with Limerick City and County Council to disseminate essential information to help local businesses protect their workers and customers from COVID-19. The department’s Safe Work Stops Covid information booklet has been published on the council’s website.

Our department is also currently investigating more than 15 outbreaks among schools and early education settings, many of which are linked to a high incidence of COVID-19 in their respective communities.

Indoor gatherings (e.g. household visits, house parties, birthday parties, organised social gatherings, family and extended family gatherings, etc) has been a significant contributing factor in the widespread surge of COVID-19 in the community, leading to clusters in workplaces, schools, and congregate settings. This onward transmission has compounded outbreaks in the community.

Dr Mai Mannix, Director of Public Health Mid-West – Photo: Keith Wiseman

Dr Mai Mannix, Director of Public Health Mid-West, said: “While progress is being made in relation to last month’s cyber attack, our department remains very busy managing new COVID-19 outbreaks in workplaces, schools, and communities. And while numbers appear to have lowered in some recent days, we can expect fluctuations, but the daily figures need to be significantly lower and kept at low levels for a sustained period of time.

“Because of the high incidence of COVID-19 in the community and the recent easing of restrictions, people who are unvaccinated will be at higher risk of infection, so I am urging everyone to redouble their efforts when socialising with friends and family. Reduce your social contacts, meet outdoors, and avoid indoor social contact outside the Public Health guidelines.

“As Leaving Certificate exams commence tomorrow, I am urging students, and friends and families of students, to be extra conscious of activity outside your household this month. Unfortunately, we aware of a small number of students who will miss this week’s exams as a result of being a confirmed case or close contact. This is such an important moment in their lives, and we can help them by following the Public Health guidelines.”