Covid-19 cases in hospital drop to five month low point

THE number of Covid-19 patients in hospital in Letterkenny has fallen to its lowest level in almost five months.
According to latest figures from the Health Service Executive, there were 13 patients with Covid receiving treatment in LUH, continuing a downwards trend.
This compares with 99 this time last month, January 23, while there were 120 people being treated for the disease at its peak five days earlier (January 18).
The last time numbers fell below ten was on Friday, October 2, 2020 when there were eight Covid-19 patients receiving treatment in LUH.
LUH’s virus figures are now the 19th highest in the country, the list headed by the St. James’s Hospital, Dublin, with 81.
Three patients remain in the intensive care unit at Letterkenny where there are no vacant general or critical care beds.
Although the number of patients with Covid-19 in hospital is slowly decreasing, the variation of the virus that is circulating at the moment is highly transmissible which means that public health measures such as wearing a mask, keeping two metre distance and frequent hand washing, continue to be very important.
In a statement earlier this week, Hospital management said there were 10 patients with ‘actively infectious Covid-19’ and the ICU remains in escalation with six patients, three of whom have Covid-19.
The number of staff on Covid-related sick leave stands at 81 currently. This includes staff who have Covid-19, symptomatic staff, staff who are close contacts of a positive case, and staff who are cocooning because they are considered in an at-risk category.
Regarding the resumption of services, hospital manager Seán Murphy said they started to phase in time-critical surgery on Monday, February 15.
“Where possible virtual outpatient clinics having been taking place over the past couple of months and where appropriate, these will continue to reduce the footfall into the clinics and keep the number of contacts down for both patients and staff. Face to face outpatient clinics are gradually being phased back in.
“Patients are being contacted directly with details of their appointment,” Mr Murphy said.
A total 21 new confirmed cases were identified in Donegal by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre yesterday evening, bringing the total to 256 for the past two weeks.
It leaves the county with a 14-day incidence rate of 160.8 – well below the national average of 231.4.

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