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Press Release

Statement from the National Public Health Emergency Team - Friday 6 March

Published: 6 March 2020
From: Department of Health

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre has this evening been informed of five new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland:

  • one case, a male, in the east of Ireland, is associated with travel from northern Italy
  • one case, a female, in the west of Ireland, is associated with close contact with a confirmed case
  • one case, a female, in the south of Ireland, a healthcare worker is associated with close contact with a confirmed case
  • one case, a male, in the south of the country, is associated with travel
  • one case, a female, in the south of the country, is associated with travel from northern Italy

There are now 18 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.

The HSE is working rapidly to identify any contacts the patients may have had, to provide them with information and advice to prevent further spread.

Dr. Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer with the Department of Health, said:

“We ask that no organisation, school or health service provider acts unilaterally. We need to respond to the threat of COVID-19 in unison, following the advice of Public Health.”

Liam Woods, HSE Director of Acute Operations, said:

“Healthcare workers are at the frontline of this virus outbreak. The Department of Health and the HSE are equally dedicated to protecting and supporting this vital group of people.”

Dr. Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said:

“The past number of weeks have been challenging for everyone in our healthcare system. This challenge is going escalate as the number of cases here rise.
“We must prioritise the protection of our frontline healthcare staff and as part of this the National Public Health Emergency Team has established a sub-group to identify and implement appropriate measures to protect them.”

The general public is advised to follow advice from the HSE and the Health Protection Surveillance Centre to protect their health.

Any person who has travelled from an affected region in the last 14 days, or who has come in contact with a confirmed case in the last 14 days, and is concerned that they may have symptoms of Covid-19 (Coronavirus) should immediately isolate themselves from others and phone their GP.

ENDS

Notes to the Editor:

The National Public Health Emergency Team case definition includes Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea, Iran and four regions in northern Italy (Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia-Romagna and Piedmont) alongside mainland China.

  • anyone who has been to an affected region (mainland China, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Iran and four regions in northern Italy) in the last 14 days AND is experiencing symptoms should immediately self-isolate and call their GP
  • anyone who has been in close contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19 in the last 14 days AND is experiencing symptoms should immediately self-isolate and call their GP
  • anyone who has been to an affected region (China, Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea, Iran and four regions in northern Italy) in the last 14 days, and are well, should visit www.HSE.ie for advice

It can take up to 14 days for symptoms of Covid-19 (Coronavirus) to show.

Symptoms may include:

  • a cough
  • shortness of breath
  • breathing difficulties
  • fever (high temperature)

Covid-19 (Coronavirus) can also cause more severe illness, including pneumonia.

Things you can do to protect yourself from getting Covid-19 (Coronavirus) include:

  • wash your hand properly and regularly
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough and sneeze

Wash your hands properly and regularly with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub:

  • after coughing and sneezing
  • after toilet use
  • before eating
  • before and after preparing food

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