Number of Covid patients in Irish hospitals lower than first wave peak, with Ireland 'on track' to hit March targets
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Number of Covid patients in Irish hospitals lower than first wave peak, with Ireland 'on track' to hit March targets

THE NUMBER of Covid-19 patients currently in Irish hospitals is dropping despite a recent rise in cases over the past month and a half.

As of Tuesday night, just 813 people suffering from coronavirus were in hospital, and just 151 in intensive care - figures far smaller than at the peak of the first wave back in Spring last year.

It means that Ireland is well and truly 'on track' to hit the 200-400 cases per day target set for March.

HSE CEO Paul Reid said on Twitter: "For the first day since we hit the peak of this wave, we're now lower than the peak of the first wave, on hospitalisations and ICU.

"The downward slope out of this is proving to be much slower than we would all like. But good hope."

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Despite the positive news, deputy chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn raised concerns, in a letter to Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly, about Ireland's epidemiological fragility.

He said that the country "continues to experience a very concerning and fragile epidemiological situation.

"Incidence is falling but remains high and is currently four times higher than in early December 2020, and 100 times higher than July 2020," Dr Glynn added.

"Our model projections show that if we can maintain a reproduction number between 0.5 and 0.9 for the coming weeks, we remain on track to have 200-400 cases per day by March 1, 2021, and 100-300 cases per day by March 15, 2021."