THE NUMBER OF people in hospital with Covid-19 receiving intensive care has fallen to its lowest level since the start of January.
HSE chief executive Paul Reid tweeted this morning that 66 people are in ICUs, a fall of nine on yesterday’s figures.
This is still higher than at any point during the second wave, and is comparable to mid-May during the first wave.
He also highlighted that the number of people in hospital with the virus now stands at 304, down eight on yesterday’s number.
“We all want this trend to continue down and avoid the tide turning against us again,” Reid added.
Concerns remain among health authorities about the static number of hospital admissions per day with people severely ill with Covid – which has remained in the region of 20 to 25 per day since 26 February – and the sustained pressure this poses to health services.
There were 21 new confirmed cases in hospitals in the past 24 hours, continuing this trend.
The latest data shows a 8.5% increase in the number of new cases of Covid-19 compared to last week.
20 deaths and 584 new cases were confirmed last night.
A total of 529,984 have now received their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, as of 24 March, representing 11.13% of the population.
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Some 202,700 people have received both doses, meaning 4.26% of the population has the full protection offered by the vaccines.
The total number of doses administered is expected to surpass 750,000 by this weekend.
The Irish Times reports that AstraZeneca’s Irish president expects Ireland to receive “a large volume” of the vaccine over the coming weeks, with a record 100,000-dose shipment arriving in the coming days.
Dublin’s Beacon Hospital remains in the spotlight. The HSE has appointed a designated person to oversee the private facility’s vaccine programme after it was criticised for giving jabs to teachers at a private school in Co Wicklow this week.