Tag Archives: hospitals

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly

This morning/afternoon.

As of yesterday, there were 808 people in hospital ‘with Covid-19,’ the highest figure since January 26.

Via RTÉ News:

As of this morning, there were 51 patients with the virus in intensive care units, up from 47 yesterday.

This is creating a “very heavy burden” on hospitals as entire wards have to be used exclusively for treating Covid patients, he said.

Speaking on RTÉ’s Today with Claire Byrne, Minister Donnelly said he said he is not concerned about the trends in terms of the population.

He said: “The ongoing advice I have from public health is that while the numbers are high, the total amount of severe illness in the country is still low.”


Covid-19 cases creating ‘heavy burden’ on hospitals – minister (RTE)

Above from left: Paul Reid, CEO, HSE; Anne O’Connor, Chief Operations Officer, HSE; and Dr Colm Henry, Chief Clinical Officer, HSE.

This afternoon.

Steevens’  Lane, Dublin 8.

The media briefing for the weekly HSE operational update on the response to Covid-19.


Paul Reid, HSE CEO, said 238 people are in hospital with Covid-19, an increase of 24 on last night.

The number of people in intensive care units has fallen slightly to 29.

He said of the 8,500 people who have contracted Covid-19 between 29th September and 12th October, 245 people have been admitted to hospital, and 22 admitted to ICU.

Mr Reid said 25% of these hospitalisations have been in people under 35, 27% have been aged 35-64 and 47% are in the 65 and over category.

He said nine people aged 35-64 have been admitted to ICU in this time period and 13 have been aged 65 and over.

HSE sees ‘concerning growth’ in hospitalisations (RTÉ)

Earlier: Scales Fall

Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Professor Ronan Collins

This morning.

RTÉ Radio One’s Today with Claire Byrne.

Professor Ronan Collins, a consultant geriatrician at Tallaght Hospital in Dublin, spoke to Claire Byrne.

The host began by asking Prof Collins if he believed pubs which don’t serve food should be allowed to reopen.

They then spoke about recent news reports that 70 people aged over 75 have tested positive for Covid-19 over the past fortnight.

Prof. Ronan Collins: “It’s not about pubs and drink as such, it’s actually about the pubs opening, the pubs are part of our normal life and that I suppose I would agree with the Tànaiste to a degree that we do have to get back to living and that includes normalising life in as far as possible.”

Claire Byrne: “That’s across the board and not just pubs then?”

Collins: “Absolutely, because, you know, to be fair, listen, again I think it can be easy to dichotomise showing scenes from, like Killarney last week or maybe scenes from Temple Bar. But there’s a different reality to this as well. First of all, I agree with you. The current situation is a little bit of a farce from what I’ve observed in terms of people serving food and what is going on.

“But if you go down to many places now in the small villages, small towns and indeed I have family who have lived in these areas themselves, all they have as their community centre, and it’s not even about drink, it’s about where people meet, have a chance to exchange some news, you know, support one another. And we’re faced into winter and I think, we do have to learn how to live with this virus.

“The one thing I would make, just as a personal comment, you know, I think all of our views have matured as the situation has progressed but the one thing I’ve learned myself is that we have lost, as a society, the skills of how to live with a pandemic. I heard our Taoiseach last night saying “unprecedented”. It’s hardly “unprecedented” that we have a pandemic. We had four of them in the 1900s and ironically, in the last 20 years, we’ve had four or five threatened or actual pandemics. This was always coming and we have lost our skillset as a society of how to live and cope through a pandemic.”

Byrne: “Well, look, I know people will be worried today because of that news that there have been 70 cases in the over-75s age group and I want to ask you about that next…”

Collins: “Claire, are these cases or are they positive swab results? Because most of us in the hospitals are not seeing this big surge of cases. Now the truth is, and I’m not, I don’t want, in any way, to be compared with some, kind of, more radical commentators on this but if you do swab more people, you will find more cases, inverted commas, of people who have shown positivity on a swab. These people may not even be ill. Some of them are very mildly and are very self-limiting illnesses and I think there’s a degree of, kind of…”

“I think it would be helpful actually, if these bulletins are going to continue every night and I’m not sure about the wisdom of that going forward either. It is important to keep public aware…but I’m not sure having a day-by-day count every day is helping necessarily either at the moment.

“I mean I think hospitalisations are a good marker of actually…”

Byrne: “I mean they’re down. We know they are down.”

Collins: “Yes, so, I mean, you don’t want to be terrorising people either. There is a real danger here, you know, that the greater good of society will not be served by continuing to adopt the ultra-conservative approach. Death rate is a very important outcome of this pandemic. But it is not the only outcome of when we come through this pandemic and how society looks like afterward.”

Byrne: “So you seem to be saying that older people need not to be afraid by this news?”

Collins: “Well, listen everybody needs to be afraid. Because it’s a serious infection and it is a more serious infection as you get older. Although age, in itself, and I keep on making this point, age, in itself, is not the greatest risk factor for determining how seriously unwell you become with this. It is a big factor but it’s underlying illnesses, is actually a major determinant of mortality and things like that.

“So I mean we all need to be afraid. Listen, there’s people of my age who died from this and you became quite unwell yourself, I believe, with the virus. I’m working with a doctor here at the moment who lost her father recently who is not that much older than me so I’m not trivialising this at all. This is a serious infection but we do also have to understand that there is a society at whole that needs to move on.

“We have to learn how to live with this virus. There is not a vaccine next month, there is not a vaccine in two or three months. There may be a vaccine in a year, we don’t know yet. We are going to have to learn how to live with a pandemic and, you know what, it’s a little bit of a wake-up call, to us. Many people in Africa have to live with the threat of serious infection and we forgot, I think, since the time of maybe the TB outbreaks and the Polio outbreaks in Cork and serious outbreaks of Rheumatic Fever, etc, all very serious illnesses but we have forgotten, as a society, of how to cope and live with the threat of infection.”

Earlier: Soz

Pic: YouTube

St James’s Hospital, Dublin

Journalist Sean Finan, in The Dublin Inquirer, reports:

Between 20 to 25 people are being discharged into homelessness every week from St James’s Hospital, says Dr Clíona Ní Cheallaigh, clinical lead of the Inclusion Health Service.

In 2014, Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Alan Kelly, and Minister of State Paudie Coffey said they would put in place a formal discharge protocol so that “as far as possible, no patient will be discharged into homelessness”.

Sometimes people come into the hospital housed and leave homeless, says Ní Cheallaigh – a situation facing a sick patient at the moment, whose wife has just died while he’s been in hospital, and who just lost his private-rental apartment, too.

“Now he’s facing homelessness for the first time after leaving hospital,” says Ní Cheallaigh.

As He Grows Sicker, One Man Cycles Between Homelessness and Hospital Beds (Sean Finnan, The Dublin Inquirer)


Paediatric radiologist Gabrielle Colleran, from Galway

Earlier today.

Paediatric radiologist Gabrielle Colleran, from Galway, recalled the death of her father and called for reform of the Irish health system – namely timely access to quality healthcare.

She wrote…

Gabrielle Colleran