These People Are Six


Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly

This afternoon.

Via RTÉ:

NPHET has recommended to Government that a maximum of six people from a single household should be allowed visit another home nationwide.

This rule currently applies in Dublin and Donegal, which are on Level 3 restrictions, but up until now six people from three households could visit another home in other counties, which are on Level 2…..


Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly earlier said that members of NPHET look at a “lot more than cases” when they are deciding about imposing restrictions.

He was responding to quotes from Tánaiste Leo Varadkar in The Currency, who had questioned if Ireland is using the right criteria to make far-reaching decisions around restrictions and economic lockdowns.

NPHET recommends new restrictions on household visits (RTÉ)

Earlier: Why Are We Using Case Numbers To Make Decisions On Restrictions?


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15 thoughts on “These People Are Six

  1. GiggidyGoo

    No wonder Varadkar was out of the blocks earlier. The Bart Simpson (he must be an avid fan, or have met Bart or Homer at some stage) “It wasn’t me” line comes to mind.

    1. John Smith

      @ Termagant

      It’s like this, you see: the reason for having a fixed plan with set levels is so that you can spend money on leaflets for every household and then change the goalposts so that the leaflets are out-of-date and even more of a waste of money than they were in the first place.

      Also the reason for numbering the levels is so that you can add (imaginary) figures after the decimal point. Before Dublin was raised up a level it was on about 2.5 and now it’s on about 3.5. Donegal is on 3.0. The rest of the country is on 2.0 but this new bit of fun would make it 2.3, perhaps, or maybe a bit higher.

      Variety is the spice of life, after all, and we need a bit of spice with all these blasted restrictions.

  2. dan

    nphet, what you get when a bunch of career civil servants meet to make decisions.

    Hopeless bunch.
    Ronan Glynn Acting Chief Medical Officer, Chair of NPHET
    Eibhlin Connolly Deputy Chief Medical Officer of the Department of Health
    Alan Smith Deputy Chief Medical Officer of the Department of Health
    Paul Bolger Director of the Department of Health Resources Division
    Colm Bergin Consultant Infectious Diseases, St. James’s Hospital and Professor of Medicine, Trinity College Dublin
    Tracey Conroy Acute Hospitals Division of the Department of Health
    John Cuddihy Interim Director of the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC)
    Cillian de Gascun Director of the National Virus Reference Laboratory, Chair of the Coronavirus Expert Advisory Group
    Colm Desmond Corporate Legislation, Mental Health, Drugs Policy and Food Safety Division of the Department of Health
    Colm Henry Chief Clinical Officer of the Health Service Executive (HSE)
    Lorraine Doherty National Clinical Director for Health Protection of the HPSC and HSE
    Mary Favier President of the Irish College of General Practitioners (ICGP)
    Fergal Goodman Primary Care Division of the Department of Health
    Kevin Kelleher Assistant National Director of the HSE
    Marita Kinsella Director of the National Patient Safety Office at the Department of Health
    Kathleen Mac Lellan Social Care Division of the Department of Health
    Jeanette Mc Callion Medical Assessor of the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA)
    Tom McGuinness Assistant National Director at the Office of Emergency Planning at the HSE
    Siobhán Ní Bhrian Lead for Integrated Care of the HSE
    Philip Nolan President of Maynooth University
    Kate O’Flaherty Head of Health and Wellbeing at the Department of Health
    Darina O’Flanagan Special Advisor to NPHET and the Department of Health
    Siobhan O’Sullivan Chief Bioethics Officer of the Department of Health
    Michael Power National Clinical Lead, Critical Care Programme, HSE Consultant in Anaesthetics and Intensive Care Medicine at Beaumont Hospital, Dublin
    Phelim Quinn Chief Executive Officer of the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA)
    Máirín Ryan Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Health Technology Assessment of HIQA
    Breda Smyth Director of Public Health Medicine of the HSE
    Deirdre Watters Head of Communications of the Department of Health
    Liam Woods National Director of Acute Operations of the HSE
    David Walsh National Director of Community Operations of the HSE
    David Leach Deputy National Director of Communications of the HSE

    And this is the sort of crap they discuss:

    (iv) Monitoring of outbreaks in Nursing Homes and Long-Term Residential Facilities
    It was agreed that “Monitoring of outbreaks in Nursing Homes and Long-Term Residential Facilities” would
    become a standing Agenda Item at future NPHET meetings.

    1. Barry the Hatchet

      Oh give me a break. You can criticise NPHET all you like for its decisions, but accusing its members of being “a bunch of career civil servants” is just factually inaccurate and makes you look like a silly turnip.

  3. Dave

    Earnestly poring over their gibberish stats and chaotic recommendations while the real world attempts to get on with things outside. This lot, and the blindly cow-towing Govt, is in real danger of losing the public’s cooperation.

  4. John Smith

    @ Dave – ‘in real danger of losing the public’s cooperation.’

    In as much as they had it in the first place, that is.

    Those who obey will continue to obey. They will ensure they keep within the new limits (if/when they are imposed) – that’s if they still have anyone coming to see them now, after they’ve (1) sat down for an evening and planned how to reduce their contacts AND (2) halved their social contacts – two jolly little party games that have recently been urged on everyone.

    Those who have let all these guidelines go over their heads and have made their own decisions will continue to do so, along with an added number of converts from amongst the ‘well, I suppose we have to’ group in the middle, who are getting more and more chokka with the whole shebang.

  5. f_lawless

    Is it plausible that pressure is somehow being exerted on NPHET to closely align their strategy with that of the UK? Considering the North is part of the UK, It’s hard to imagine Ireland adopting any approach at odds with that of the UK.

    I think within the space of the same week both the UK and Ireland governments announce a 5-level alert system for ‘living with Covid’. Just as Boris recently said he foresees restrictions being kept in place for a further 6 months in order to suppress the virus, days later, Glynn also talked of restrictions being in place for 6 months.. Two weeks ago the UK’s ‘rule of six’ was announced, prompting severe criticism from experts such as UK epidemiologist, Prof. Carl Heneghan . Quote:

    ‘the ‘rule of six’’ could well be the policy that tips the British public over the edge, for it is a disturbing decision that has no scientific evidence to back it up and may well end up having major social consequences.

    ..At Oxford University’s Centre for Evidence Based Medicine, we have spent years trawling through the scientific evidence on the effects of measures such as distancing on respiratory viral spread. We are not aware of any study pointing to the number six. If it’s made up, why not five or seven?’

    Where is NPHET getting their figure of 6 from?

    I remember a few years back it became public knowledge that GCHQ had been tapping all of Ireland’s internet traffic. The revelation was met with silence by the Irish government. As far as I’m aware, no action was ever taken and it’s still happening today. Of course they knew it was happening. Could it be the case that we’ve again been absorbed into a wider security operation all under the banner of “public safety”?

    1. John Smith

      As far as I can see, the alignment with the UK – or, rather, with England – has been evident throughout. The hyper-extension of the lockdown-type measures has been more in line with England than with any country on mainland Europe. Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have their own variations on the theme and Ireland just makes another variety of the same.

      One variation which, unfortunately, Ireland hasn’t taken from England, though, is the recognition there that children should not be included in the count of six – an important difference for larger families, who can have major difficulties with keeping to the guidelines in Ireland.

  6. Dr.Fart

    the public stopped listening to them ages ago. no one is taking these restrictions on board at all.

  7. diddy

    it’s over…nobody cares anymore. the only thing people care about is what they can get away with. we had a lockdown. it didn’t work

Comments are closed.

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