A further 28 people diagnosed with Covid-19 have died in Ireland while the number of positive cases in Clare is on the increase, up by 22 to a total of 187.
The Health Protection Surveillance Centre said the additional 28 deaths brings to 794 the number of laboratory confirmed Covid-19 related deaths in Ireland.
As of 1pm this Thursday afternoon, the HPSC has been notified of 936 new confirmed cases. There is now a total of 17,607 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the country.
The HSE is working to identify any contacts the patients may have had to provide them with information and advice to prevent further spread.
Today’s data from the HPSC, (as of midnight April 21) reveals that of the 16,439 cases:
* 56% are female and 43% are male
* the median age of confirmed cases is 48 years
* 2,424 cases (15%) have been hospitalised
* Of those hospitalised, 331 cases have been admitted to ICU
* 4,545 cases are associated with healthcare workers
* Dublin has the highest number of cases at 8,216 (50% of all cases) followed by Cork with 1,087 cases (7%)
* Of those for whom transmission status is known: community transmission accounts for 52%, close contact accounts for 44%, travel abroad accounts for 4%
Dr. Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said: “Covid-19 is a highly infectious disease. Modelling data shows us that the reproduction number remains below 1.0 and that we have achieved great progress through the action of staying apart.
“In order to continue protecting ourselves, our vulnerable groups and our healthcare workers, we must continue to practice physical distancing, respiratory etiquette and regular hand washing. These basic steps, if done by all, will save many lives.”
Dr. Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said: “Today, the World Health Organisation Regional Director for Europe noted that up to half of those who have died of Covid-19 across Europe were living in residential care settings.
“Ireland continues to closely examine mortality so that we can understand it and do everything in our power to prevent it.
“We are now using our increased testing capacity to focus on staff and residents so that we can learn in real time about this virus and take actions informed by that evidence.”
Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of NPHET Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said: “For the population at large, the growth rate is at zero and the transmission of the virus is effectively suppressed.
“Our R number is between 0.5 and 0.8. This success emphasises how vital it is to remain vigilant in our behaviours. If the R number moves above one, we are no longer in control of the disease.”