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54 new cases of COVID-19 confirmed

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COVID-19 update Monday (March 16)
 

The Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) has announced this evening that there's 54 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.

The new cases are made up of 30 males and 24 females.

* 41 are associated with the east of the country
* 11 are associated with the south
* 2 are associated with the north/west of the country.

To date there have been two deaths associated with COVID-19 in Ireland.
There are now 223 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland.

The HSE is now working rapidly to identify any contacts the patients may have had, to provide them with information and advice to prevent further spread.

The National Public Health Emergency Team met today (Monday), and made the following decisions:

* all Irish residents are advised against all non-essential travel overseas at this time until March 29
* all persons, including Irish residents, entering the country from overseas should restrict movements for 14 days, if showing no symptoms. This does not apply to Northern Ireland
* NPHET strongly recommends against leisure cruise ship travel

Today, the WHO called on all countries to test every suspected case of COVID-19. There are now five hospital sites around the country (in addition to the NVRL) providing testing. This number will increase over the coming week. Additional laboratory capacity will be accessed as required.

"We are working closely with ICGP to manage the rapid increase in requests for testing,” Dr Colm Henry, Chief Clinical Officer, HSE said.

“If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19, self isolate and phone your GP, who will assess your need for a test. We ask people to be patient as we increase the number of staff and testing centres to accommodate the increase requirement for testing.”

Dr. Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, added; “The behaviours we adopt in the next seven days will form the template for how we interrupt the spread of this virus over the coming months. We need to sustain social distancing, respiratory hygiene and these new ways of behaving if we are to succeed in minimising the threat posed by COVID-19."

Research published today by Amárach has shown that 84% of the population know the symptoms of COVID-19, more than three quarters (78%) are staying at home more often and 45% of all employees have started working from home.

"These findings are very positive and demonstrate the efforts that so many people across society are making to protect our communities,” Dr Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said. “The challenge now is build on and sustain this momentum over the coming weeks.”

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Relief as indoor dining finally resumes

By Michelle Crean After almost 500 days of closures the sense of relief was evident this week as restaurants, cafés and bars were finally allowed to welcome customers back in. Some had reopened for outdoor dining previously to help keep their businesses afloat but it was back to normal on Monday. According to the new […]

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By Michelle Crean

After almost 500 days of closures the sense of relief was evident this week as restaurants, cafés and bars were finally allowed to welcome customers back in.

Some had reopened for outdoor dining previously to help keep their businesses afloat but it was back to normal on Monday.

According to the new rules as set out by Fáilte Ireland and the Government, in order for customers to access indoor service, they must show proof that they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 in the past six months. Those who are not yet vaccinated can only be served outside.

A maximum of six people aged 13 and over are allowed per table and it’s advised that face coverings be worn when not at the table, there is no time limit, customers can only eat or drink at a table and not at the bar or counter, and one person must give their details for contract tracing purposes. Live music and dancing is not allowed.

The Killarney Advertiser spoke to a number of businesses this week and overall the feeling was relief that they can finally get back to normal service but the issue of staffing still remains.

Brian Murphy from Courtney’s Bar said he was feeling nervous.

“I’m feeling nervous as we don’t have enough staff,” he said. “It’s a Monday so hopefully we can cope. Things will settle down and we’ll find a level we are all happy with.”

At the Porterhouse Restaurant Lee O’Callaghan said “It’s great to be back open and have people coming into the restaurant”.

“Hopefully we have a long season after being closed for so long.”

Staff at Reidy’s, Ellen Shannon, Rory Carroll and Jack Sweeney, added that they’re delighted to return to indoor dining.

“Hopefully we get back to normal soon and to brighter days ahead.”

At Jimmy Brien’s Bar in Fair Hill, customers echoed the same sentiments about being finally open.

“We are delighted to be back,” Danjoe Aherne said.

“We appreciate everything Alan Breen has done for us. We’re glad to be back home again!” Charlie Buckingham said.

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Time to get your skates on!

By Sean Moriarty People of Killarney are being urged to have their say on a new skateboard park before next week’s deadline. A public consultation on the project has been launched by Kerry County Council. Cllr Donal Grady, who first put forward the idea of a Killarney skateboard park in 2018, is urging the people […]

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By Sean Moriarty

People of Killarney are being urged to have their say on a new skateboard park before next week’s deadline.

A public consultation on the project has been launched by Kerry County Council.

Cllr Donal Grady, who first put forward the idea of a Killarney skateboard park in 2018, is urging the people of the town to have their say.

It is proposed to build the park on land adjacent to the Killarney Sports and Leisure Centre with help and support from the KDYS.

“In 2017 a group of skateboard enthusiasts approached me, they had no designated safe area to enjoy their sport. Sport is vital for youths, stakeboarding increases metabolism, improves balance and enhances coordination use,” Cllr Grady told the Killarney Advertiser.

“Skateboarding is now an Olympic sport. I commend Kerry County Council, management, engineers and the planning team for getting the project to this stage, it’s now up to the people of Killarney to have their say. It’s vital positive submissions are lodged by Wednesday, August 25,”

Submissions can be lodged to the Playground Unit, Finance Dept, Kerry County Council.

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