Covid patients in ICU drops to lowest level this year

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The number of people with Covid-19 being treated in Intensive Care Units (ICU) has dropped to the lowest level recorded this year.

According to an update from the Department of Health on Thursday, there are now 70 people in hospital with the virus, 23 of whom are in ICU.

The last time these levels were noted in ICU was on December 26th, when there was also 23 people requiring intensive care.

This comes as 398 new Covid cases were confirmed on Thursday, after 259 cases were reported on Wednesday, the lowest daily figures since mid-December.

In a tweet, HSE chief executive Paul Reid attributed the fall in ICU numbers to the impact of the ongoing rollout of the Covid-19 vaccines.

“This is a remarkable benefit of out strong vaccination programme and public support overall. We all deserve to cherish and protect these great moments,” Mr Reid said.

St James’ Hospital in Dublin also confirmed as of Thursday there were no Covid-19 patients being treated at the hospital for the first time since the pandemic began.

Mr Reid said it was a “remarkable” feat, but urged the public to remain cautious, adding variants continue to pose a significant risk to our progress in reducing the transmission of the virus.

Europe

As much of Europe continues with easing Covid-19 restrictions, Ireland is ranked 17th out of 27 EU countries in terms of Covid-19 incidence rates.

According to data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), the State’s 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 is now 115.7.

Malta has the lowest rate, reporting just 12.6 cases per 100,000, followed by Romania with 16.5.

The EU countries with the highest incidence rates are Latvia (202.7), the Netherlands (203.7) and Denmark (215.3), while France, Sweden, Belgium, Greece, Lithuania and Slovenia all have rates in excess of 160 cases per 100,000.



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