THE NUMBER of people being treated for Covid-19 in Irish hospitals has fallen dramatically by more than 75% from the pandemic’s previous mid-January peak.
According to the latest figures, a total of 472 patients are currently hospitalised in Ireland with coronavirus. Of that number, 108 are being treated in intensive care, down from 198 a month previously.
The decrease has allowed for the closure of 32 critical care beds over the course of February.
Though 566 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 were reported on Wednesday, which was some 200 more than on Tuesday, this number will still in line with downward trend that has seen weekly case numbers drop by between 10% and 15% week-on-week for the past three weeks.
Commenting on the declining numbers, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn attributed the steady falls to the continued efforts of young adults in helping curb the spread.
Though he acknowledged a number of high-profile incidents, he noted that case numbers in the 19 to 24 age group had fallen by as much as 40% since the middle of February.
While incidents like the much-publicised student street party in Limerick had dominated the headlines, Glynn insisted that the efforts of the thousands of youngsters who remained at home was having a different to their communities and Ireland as a whole.
The decline in case numbers despite the Irish government facing continued criticism over the pace of the vaccine rollout in Ireland.
Several Fianna Fáil TDs, including former minister Dara Calleary, have criticised the speed of the vaccination programme.
Responding to the criticism, the Taoiseach Micheál Martin acknowledged there had been some issues as a result of supply problems with AstraZeneca.
He did plege to engage more with HSE to ensure vaccination plans are properly communicated at this key juncture in Ireland’s recovery from the pandemic.