Are more Covid restrictions or lockdown in Ireland inevitable? The latest Taoiseach hints at what’s to come

The Executive Director of Health Services said hospitals will be under real pressure in December and January as a result of the Covid-19 virus.

CEO Paul Reed urged people to get the booster vaccine, with walking centers opening across the country this weekend.

He wrote on Twitter: “In December and January, we know our hospitals will be under real pressure as there are currently 481 Covid-19 patients and 113 in the intensive care unit.

“We can all help improve this by taking the booster vaccine when it is introduced.

«Many locations opened this weekend for specific groups.»

All leaders have refused to rule out new restrictions.

When asked about more restrictions given his comments that the Omicron variant is likely to be more transferable than the Delta variant, Taoiseach said: «Look, we have a series of restrictions in place now through January 9th, which the government has approved on the advice of from NPHET.

“One can never rule out anything, the honest answer is that nothing related to Covid-19 can be ruled out because there are so many twists and turns.

Both Tanaiste and Taoiseach have made comments about the Covid situation in recent days.

“But what I think is important is that we adhere to the guidelines set and the restrictions that are put in place and that we take care of our personal and group behavior, and that is key.

«To be fair to people, in recent weeks, they’ve taken the message, they’ve taken the advice on board.

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“There has been a significant drop in a lot of events, cancellations of events and people adapting, and that has actually had a good result in terms of stabilizing numbers in hospital and intensive care which will give the health service a very large space now for the coming weeks.”

Dr Holohan said on Friday: “We are in a very uncertain and precarious situation due to the high incidence of Covid-19 in Ireland due to the highly transmissible delta variant.

“This is a very troubling issue as we await further evidence regarding the Omicron variant and the effect it may have on it.

Stephen Donnelly, Tony Holohan and Paul Reed join the Ministry of Health
Stephen Donnelly, Tony Holohan and Paul Reed join the Ministry of Health

“Currently, based on the evidence available to us, we believe that public health measures that we know very well will slow and halt transmission of the Omicron variant, as well as the delta variant.

“Early indications are that a booster dose of the Covid-19 vaccine will provide good protection against infection from Delta and Omicron.

“If you are eligible for a booster dose of Covid-19 vaccine, please take the opportunity to receive your vaccine as soon as it is available to you. Likewise, if you have not yet received an initial dose of Covid-19 vaccine, then please apply as soon as possible.”

Leo Varadkar He said: «The new restrictions that have been announced have been a bitter disappointment to all of us. It has been a physical blow especially for sectors such as hospitality, arts, entertainment and leisure events.»

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He said, «We are bringing these restrictions on the basis of strong public health advice and three concerns in particular:

  1. Possibility of increased socialization as Christmas approaches
  2. The flu season we didn’t see last year, but may have this year
  3. Uncertainty about the Omicron variable».

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