Covid: 14,555 positive PCR cases, with 5,406 antigens registered

The Department of Health has reported an additional 14,555 new PCR-confirmed cases of Covid-19, also 5,406 positive antigen tests  logged through the HSE portal on Friday.

The number of people hospitalised with the virus stands at 940, which is a reduction of 80 since yesterday. 89 are being treated in intensive care, which is up six since yesterday.

There were 17,065 cases of Covid-19 reported yesterday by PCR only, with 1,011 people in hospital and 92 in ICU.

The figures come as Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan has been urged people to note that as people get familiar with the new advice on isolation periods, the importance of other protective measures should not be ignored.

“This latest guidance places an increased emphasis on the use by cases and close contacts of higher-grade face masks, as opposed to cloth masks,” he said.

Dr Holohan added: “Other protective measures including strict limiting of social contacts are also advised for the full 10 days following a confirmed Covid-19 infection or close contact.

“These combined measures are intended to offset any increase in risk of transmission that may result from the reduction and or removal of the requirement to self-isolate or restrict movements.

He restated the latest advice, saying that it is now recommended that medica grade or FFP2 masks are used by any confirmed case, close contact or symptomatic person over the age of 13, as well as over 60s or vulnerable people in crowded settings.

Holohan said “Masks can play a key role in reducing transmission of Covid-19 if made correctly, well fitted and worn properly – that is they cover the nose, mouth and chin,”

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