A flu virus expert has said that policymakers will have difficult decisions to make in relation to Covid-19 in the coming weeks.
Dr Kim Roberts, influenza virus researcher and Assistant Professor of Virology at Trinity College Dublin, told Newstalk Breakfast that the country should expect more cases of the coronavirus.
Her comment came as a second case of the virus was confirmed in the east of the country.
“It was always a case that we would have another, we should expect more, in some other countries the numbers infected with the virus are going up, and quite quickly,” Dr Roberts said.
“There is a balance that needs to be struck especially early on in an outbreak within a country, to make sure that information gets across in a way that can be absorbed and not create fear and panic.
“But we do need to explain to people that this situation is changing and that in all likelihood we will see more cases in Ireland, we will see clusters of cases probably within family groups, that’s what’s happening in other countries as well and we may see evidence of community transmission.
“We can slow down the transmission so that our health services are not overstretched and that’s one of the key things. There’s a lot of discussion about how serious this situation is, we can’t give specifics about how many numbers it’s going to affect, we can only give the data – what the data is suggesting, but we do need to take it seriously.
“Policymakers have difficult decisions to make, I think we should expect that policy will change swiftly over the next few weeks, depending on what the evidence is saying about community transmission in Ireland and the UK.”