The Department of Public Health Mid-West is recording a sudden increase in COVID-19 cases in the Mid-West region over the past seven days, connected to widespread community transmission.
Public Health Mid-West has recorded 824 COVID-19 cases in the Mid-West over the past 14 days; 515 in Limerick, 183 in Clare, and 126 in North Tipperary. On August 12, there were 85 cases in the region; 50 in Limerick, 12 in Clare, and 23 in North Tipperary. This is the highest daily increase in the region in two months.
Similar to January wave, there are no single events that are contributing to the increase in new infections in the region. This suggests a trend of widespread community transmission with multi-setting clusters becoming more frequent.
We are recording outbreaks in long-term residential care facilities, workplaces, social activity indoors and outdoors, a small number of sports teams, among vulnerable populations, multi-household outbreaks, and community clusters.
We are aware of at least 168 individuals who attended hospitality settings while infectious over the past three weeks. We ask that you avoid these settings if you have symptoms or if you were previously at-risk of infection. Likewise, we urge the hospitality sector to fully comply with confirming valid certificates of their patrons.
The vast majority of new cases have multiple exposures and close contacts, rendering the management and investigation of new infections more resource-intensive. This means that our ability to map the disease is becoming more difficult.
Dr Marie Casey, Specialist in Public Health Medicine, said: “We are asking the public to be conscious of those who are not yet fully vaccinated, by taking extra precautions when with friends and family this weekend. Wear a mask, socially distance, wash hands frequently, limit your social contacts, avoid crowded areas, and meet in outdoor or well-ventilated areas where possible. We should not be taking chances with COVID-19 as it could cause considerable disruption to our everyday lives if an infection does occur.”