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Tag Archives: Covid-19

Former East Clare factory stores large volumes of PPE

  A 50-day supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for healthcare workers throughout the country is being stored in a former East Clare chipboard factory, the Clare Champion has revealed. Deputy Michael McNamara has visited the site of the old Finsa Forest Products factory in Scariff where he has witnessed the storage of a huge amount of PPP in an upgraded warehouse facility. Acknowledging the HSE has a number of storage facilities for PPE, Deputy McNamara said the amount of PPE in Finsa is enough to supply the needs of the whole country for 50 days. In addition to security, the East Clare Deputy believes some employment was generated as a result of upgrading the warehouse, and there are also plans to substantially improve other existing buildings. “PPE is by its nature flammable. Manufacturing ceased on the Finsa site in December 2010. For a short period afterwards, a number of sales staff were retained on site before they were moved. …

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concern over lack of services for people with diabetes

  THE lack of access for Clare people with diabetes to their specialist care teams is creating additional anxiety, according to a local diabetes advocate. Gráinne Flynn, who has Type One Diabetes, has expressed grave misgivings about the contents of a national HSE press release in relation to diabetes. In fact, the Ennis-based diabetes blogger admitted she was very upset by it as members of the Clare and Limerick Adults with Type One diabetes group have been expressing concerns about the adult diabetes service provided by UL Hospitals’ Group well before Covid-19 and have now been elevated to serious and extremely worrying. “This press release is completely tone deaf to the fact that it is the service that is continuously cancelling diabetes appointments since the service resumed in July. “The service seems to be operating only as face to face consultations. We can only assume that the staffing levels don’t allow for telephone consultations as many of the other clinics …

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Diabetes advocate highlights deficits in service

  THE lack of access for people with diabetes to their specialist care teams is creating additional anxiety during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a local diabetes advocate. Gráinne Flynn, who has Type One Diabetes, has expressed grave misgivings about the contents of a national HSE press release in relation to diabetes. In fact, the Ennis-based diabetes blogger admitted she was very upset by it as members of the Clare and Limerick Adults with Type One diabetes group have been expressing concerns about the adult diabetes service provided by UL Hospitals’ Group well before Covid-19 and have now been elevated to serious and extremely worrying. “This press release is completely tone deaf to the fact that it is the service that is continuously cancelling diabetes appointments since the service resumed in July. “The service seems to be operating only as face to face consultations. We can only assume that the staffing levels don’t allow for telephone consultations as many of …

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Expert panel reveals extent of Covid nursing home clusters

NEW figures reveal that Clare had the highest rate in Munster of Covid-19 cases in nursing homes, during the first wave of the pandemic. Data presented in the final report of the Nursing Homes Expert Panel show that this county had more than twice as many cases linked to care home clusters as Limerick. This is despite the fact that County Limerick had a far higher number of cases in the population as a whole (581) than Clare (371), in the period from March to June. Reacting to the figures, the Clare-based Chair of the Dáil Committee on Covid-19 Response confirmed that it will consider calling for a public inquiry into the fate of nursing home residents between March and May. Deputy Michael McNamara confirmed that the committee has invited members of the Expert Panel to appear before it on September 16, alongside representatives of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA). “I don’t want to prejudge these hearings,” Deputy …

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Council issues assurance over Ennis pedestrianisation measures

A STRONGLY-worded statement has been issued by Clare County Council, following concerns in some quarters about pedestrianisation measures in parts of Ennis. The local authority has moved to clarify that the initiative, which has seen the closure to traffic of the town centre’s main arteries, including O’Connell Street and Abbey Street, is a temporary response to the pandemic. In a press release, the council said that the Temporary Covid-19 Town Centre Mobility Plan for Ennis has been introduced “solely in response to Covid-19 and in line with Government guidelines on social distancing”. The statement comes in the wake of the authority’s recent decision to extend emergency road closures until early 2021 – a move which caused alarm in some sections of the town centre business community. The extension provoked criticism from one Abbey Street business owner who said the plans were more appropriate to Las Palmas or Fuengirola than an Irish market town. Noel Tierney of Tierney Cycles on Abbey …

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Average rent increases by 2.4% in Clare

The listed monthly rent in Clare increased four times higher than the national average last month, new figures have revealed. According to new statistics released by Daft.ie, the average listed monthly rent nationwide rose by 0.5% in June, the third consecutive month of marginal gains. The rise was largest in Leinster 1.5% but was present in all four regions covered, particularly in Clare where rent prices for a three-bed semi-detached house increased by 2% to €814. The national property website outlined that overall rents in Clare jumped by 2.4% up to €879 in July, which was one percentage point behind County Limerick where rents jumped by 3.4% up to €925. However, this was in sharp contrast to Limerick City where the average rent stands at €1,217 down 0.7% or in Tipperary where rent increased by 0.7% up to €858. Nationally, the average rent price is €1,412. The biggest increase in rents in Clare was recorded for large spacious properties as …

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Questions raised over extension of Covid powers for Gardaí

THE Clare-based chairperson of the Dáil committee on Covid-19 has described the prospect of legislating to give Gardaí the power to break up house parties as “tricky”. Deputy Michael McNamara called on government to make clear the rationale for new measures announced this week, which also include a reduction on numbers attending indoor and outdoor gatherings. “What is the basis of the current measures?” he asked, adding that Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly must come before the committee to explain the government’s thinking. In relation to the extension of powers for Gardaí, Deputy McNamara said that what was being proposed is still unclear. He also warned that Constitutional issues may arise. “I’m unclear, at this point, as to what exactly the government is proposing,” he said. “In general terms, under the Constitution, the assumption is that a Garda is an invitee at a person’s home. The household or ‘teaglach’ is inviolable. If Gardaí are asked to leave, they must do …

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Deputy McNamara seeks health care reforms

  MAJOR reforms will have to be delivered to transform health services in the Mid-West, particularly in the area of elderly care, according to a local Dáil deputy. If there is a second Covid-19 wave in the Mid-West during the winter, Deputy Michael McNamara has warned that it would not be acceptable if Covid-19 patients were left lying in trolleys in hospital corridors transmitting the virus. “We can’t continue with the current model for our health service and elderly care. We can’t be bringing patients into an overcrowded University Hospital Limerick (UHL). “There will have to profound changes in the way acute patients are treated because we can’t have overcrowding any more. “A stitch in time saves nine. Billions of Euro have been provided to deal with Covid-19. If a fraction of this money was spent improving our health service, we may not have needed to take such draconian measures. “The reason such draconian measures had to be taken was …

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