An analysis shows the HSE spent €89,000 on yoga and Pilates over a three-year period. Photograph: iStock

Almost €180,000 spent on mindfulness training and €89,000 on yoga in three years

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly. Photograph: Laura Hutton

Ministers may ultimately conclude health sector can be reformed without Sláintecare

Kingston Mills, professor of experimental immunology and academic director of the Trinity Biomedical Sciences Institute at TCD. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Further 1,335 coronavirus cases reported on Saturday, says Department of Health

In New York, Taoiseach Micheál Martin told the United Nations General Assembly the pandemic had ‘cast a shadow over our world’. Photograph: John Minchillo-Pool/Getty Images

Taoiseach urges support for vaccine rollout to developing countries in UN speech

One-quarter of those surveyed said they would not want information used if it was personally identifiable, or would be used for profit. File photograph: Getty

National survey of 1,300 people carried out as Sláintecare envisages move to e-health systems

The prevalence of the more transmissible Delta variant continues to pose risk. Photograph: iStock

Despite Covid infection risks, about 22% of residents live in rooms of up to four

Contact tracing is being stopped for asymptomatic cases only. Photograph: iStock

Health editor Paul Cullen explains the Covid policy shift for primary pupils from Monday

After two months of digitally-delivered cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT), 57 per cent of users with a clinical diagnosis of anxiety and depression were found to be “diagnosis-free”. Photograph: iStock

Some 88% of patients experienced significantly reduced symptoms, pilot study found

None of the hospitalised workers required admission to intensive care and no deaths were recorded over the four-week period, according to the report. Photograph: iStock

More than 260 health staff contracted virus at work over four weeks, HSE report shows

Physical activity may, paradoxically, hasten your risk of a heart attack, a new study suggests. File photograph: Getty Images

New findings do not outweigh health benefits of exercise, researchers emphasise

The research looked at almost 50,000 cases in the first two waves of the pandemic to create what is said to be the first socio-economic picture of those most affected. File photograph: Getty

Fresh research reveals severe obesity as most extreme risk factor across all models reviewed

Smoking rates among teenage boys in Ireland are increasing ‘for the first time in 25 years’. File photograph: Reuters

Study finds rates of vaping among teenagers have almost doubled over four years

Antigen tests are cheaper and faster than the standard PCR tests for detecting Covid-19, but Irish public health officials have repeatedly questioned their accuracy and utility in the pandemic. Photograph: Laura Hutton/The Irish Times

No change to mask rules for schools as Hiqa says it is ‘premature’ to consider removing requirements

Dublin docklands area, home to many corporate head offices. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Mood of uncertainty and nervousness as slow return to the workplace starts on Monday

The practice of routinely tracing contacts of cases who have flown into Ireland was ceased last week without announcement

Flight contact tracing will only be carried out if public health officials say it is necessary

The seven-day incidence of Covid-19 among children aged 5-12 was 350.3 cases per 100,000 people, almost twice the overall incidence of 196.7.

Nphet reports 1,413 confirmed cases of Covid-19 while North records five more deaths

Laura Magahy last week resigned as executive director of the Sláintecare implementation group. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Regional structures ‘critical enabler’ of reforms, Magahy and Keane told Donnelly

The number of school outbreaks more than doubled, from 17 to 40, as the autumn return to the classroom was completed. Photograph: iStock

Total of 169 outbreaks recorded across various settings, an increase on previous weeks

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said he did not think it would be necessary to reimpose a lockdown in the future but this could never be absolutely ruled out. Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin

Ireland on track for full easing of Covid restrictions in October, Nphet says

Some 464 patients are waiting for access to hospital according to the daily trolley count. This is the worst figure since the Covid-19 pandemic began. Photograph: Frank Miller

Magahy and Keane resignations shrouded in mystery but public cares about waiting lists

The recommendation comes as chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan gave the go-ahead for booster shots for nursing home residents and older people in the community. Photograph: Zsolt Czegledi/MTI via AP

Lack of need for boosters due to high level of vaccine efficacy, even against delta variant

The National Immunisation Advisory Committee recommended that boosters be given to residents aged 65 and older in long-term residential care and to those aged 80 and over living in the community. Photograph: iStock

Chief medical officer says he agrees with Niac advice on additional doses for older patients

A continual need to prescribe steroid tablets for a patient with mild to moderate asthma should signify the need for review by a patient’s GP, the Asthma Society of Ireland says. Photograph: iStock

Increase in use among small but vulnerable group ‘alarming’, says Asthma Society

About half of all Covid-19 patients in hospital and in intensive care are fully vaccinated against the disease

Rising proportion of vaccinated people in hospital reflects greater numbers in population getting vaccines

More than 10,000 schoolchildren are estimated to be isolating at home. File photograph: The Irish Times

In just one week 32,000 walk-in and self-referral tests carried out on children

Medical cannabis is indicated for treating three conditions in Ireland, although not chronic pain, and the access scheme is not yet operational. Photograph: iStock

Panel of medical experts find ‘close balance between benefits and harms’

According to the HSE just 83.5 per cent of the adult Monaghan population had received at least one vaccine dose by last Sunday. File photograph: Getty

Border counties register highest incidence of coronavirus in State, according to fresh data

Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly acknowledged the ‘big imposition’ of isolation requirements. Photograph: iStock

As testing system comes under extreme pressure, Nphet considers easing of rules

According to Health Service Executive guidelines for GPs relating to men aged under 70 years, PSA testing should not be considered a routine test. File photograph: Getty

Men asked to act in own interests on most common form of invasive male cancer in State

The HSE says it has yet to ‘operationalise’ the change in official guidelines regarding Covid-19 vaccinations for pregnant women. Photograph:  Kiran Ridley/Getty Images

‘It was a mixed experience – some got it, some didn’t,’ says Rotunda specialist

 Dr Cillian De Gascun says the C.1.2  variant  is worth monitoring so  more can be learned about it in relation to transmissibility, disease severity or vaccine effectiveness. Photograph:  Nick Bradshaw

WHO adds Mu and Lambda to list of ‘variants of interest’ as 11 cases identified here

The HSE’s Niamh O’Beirne says the high testing demand among school-based close contacts was reflective of the level of Covid-19 in the community and not evidence of spread within schools. Photograph: Alan Betson

Surge in demand for HSE contact testing since classes resumed last week

Only Malta has more people immunised than Ireland within the EU. Photograph: Leah Farrell/

Case numbers starting to fall alongside high vaccination rates are positive trends

Three counties – Monaghan, Donegal and Cavan – have 14-day incidences of over 1,000. Photograph: Alan Betson

State records 1,414 new cases of Covid-19, with 353 people in hospital, 55 in ICU

Antibodies for the virus were detected in 21 per cent of healthcare workers at St James’s Hospital in Dublin.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Study finds 13% of staff at University Hospital Galway contracted disease

Cryptosporidium infections were recorded in 58 per cent of electoral areas, and in all 26 counties. Photograph: Ian Waldie/Bloomberg

One in five localities recorded cases of cryptosporidium over a 10-year period

The latest figures show 343 people are hospitalised in the State with the disease, of whom 59 are in intensive care. File photograph: The Irish Times

Episode led public health officials to increase opportunities for testing in affected areas

Since the start of the pandemic, 5,112 Covid-19 deaths have occurred, with 87 per cent of cases having underlying conditions. File photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Further 1,751 cases of Covid-19 confirmed, 343 patients in hospital with virus

By and large, schools with proper mitigation measures in place have turned out to be safer for children than the community. Photograph: Dave Thompson/PA

Monitoring likely key to safety of pupils and teachers in Delta-era classroom

Plans to provide bariatric surgery at three centres in Dublin, Galway and Cork are dependent on Government providing up to €80 million in funding from the end of the year. Photograph: iStock

Dramatic expansion of service mapped out but not yet funded, says head of obesity programme

All 19 dogs in the study reacted to the smell associated with a seizure by making eye contact with their owners, touching them, crying or barking, the researchers found. Photograph: Getty Images

Using sweat harvested from people with epilepsy, researchers exposed dogs to odours captured before, during and after seizures

Parents have been advised to ‘moderate’ their social contacts in the coming weeks to ensure their children successfully return to school. File photograph: Getty Images

Prof Philip Nolan says mitigation measures in schools should be effective against Delta variant

Chief medical officer  Dr Tony Holohan said ‘data clearly shows that, to date, the school environment was not a major source of disease transmission’ but settings outside of school had been linked to transmission and outbreaks.    Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Holohan urges ‘caution’ on after-school activities as reopening of society gathers pace

It cost St Vincent’s, the main centre for bariatric surgery in the Republic, €1 million to treat 90 patients arriving with complications over the past four years, the hospital says.

Patients with bariatric complications going ‘straight off the plane’ to St Vincent’s hospital

According to the ESRI data,   73 per cent of people report having the digital Covid certificate. Photograph: Getty

Behaviour in pubs is substantially higher risk than in cafes and restaurants – survey

Prof Edward Mills: “These drugs are already in the pharmacy, known to be safe and they are usually cheap, so their potential for use in developing countries is huge.”

Irish scientist finds fluvoxamine may be game-changer and cut admissions by 30%

Mask-wearing statues in Temple Bar: UK data shows protection against infection provided by the Pfizer vaccine dropping from 88 per cent one month after vaccination to 74 per cent at five to six months.  Photograph: Alan Betson

Delta variant not proving to be bigger foe to vaccinated but booster could be tweaked

The number of Covid-19 outbreaks recorded last week fell by 30 to 105, according to the latest HSE update. An outbreak or cluster involves two or more linked confirmed cases. Photograph: Alan Betson

HPSC reports eight clusters linked to hotels, 10 related to restaurants or cafés and 14 in childcare

Nphet official Prof Philip Nolan points to our “highly mobile” and multinational workforce as a potential factor in infections. Up to 17 per cent of the workforce wasn’t born in Ireland and international travel is more significant than in other countries. Photograph: Alan Betson

Analysis: Despite vaccines Ireland faces uncertainty as schools reopen and winter looms

A file image of music fans at the Electric Picnic festival. Dr Tony Holohan warned the next phase of  reopening would only be safe for fully vaccinated people. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Chief medical officer says unvaccinated should not attend events such as All-Ireland football final

 Dr Tony Holohan suggested it would be another four to six weeks before some of the remaining measures could be relaxed. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Analysis: Ireland currently has the second-highest incidence of Covid-19 in the EU

Dr Tony Holohan, chief medical officer, during a Covid-19 press briefing at the Department of Health in Dublin on Tuesday. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Prof Philip Nolan tells Nphet briefing vaccination should not be mandatory for third-level

Large numbers of passengers on the Luas in Dublin city centre on Friday.  Photograph: Leah Farrell/

Vaccination hasn’t been the expected silver bullet, especially against the Delta variant

The Government says work is under way to establish a compensation scheme for anyone who suffers injury arising from one of the State’s vaccination programmes

Report recommends ex-gratia scheme for those who suffered injury from programme

‘Reports received are consistent with the types received in adults, with most being mild to moderate in nature.’ File photograph: Getty

Symptoms noted include dizziness, abdominal pain, nausea, headache and blurred vision

HSE chief executive Paul Reid said Ireland remained in a period of ‘sustained threat’ from Covid-19. Photograph: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland/PA

HSE chief Paul Reid says Ireland remains in a period of ‘sustained threat’ from Covid-19

The pandemic still casts a long shadow over society and the health service, and yet data on the progress of the disease comes out only in dribs and drabs.

Ninety days after ransomeware hit HSE, lack of data feed for media and public disturbing

Registration for Covid-19 vaccination of 12-15 year olds opens on Thursday. Photograph: Brian Lawless/PA

Inpatient and day procedure list now at 77,000, up from 67,000 at end of 2019

Where women are hesitant, partners should be encouraged to avail of the vaccine, Dr Cliona Murphy, chair of the Institute of Obstetricians, has advised.  Photograph: Tom Honan

Expectant mothers urged to get vaccinated as Delta variant has greater risks

The Health Service Executive in the west and northwest is urging greater vigilance in light of the increase in virus cases and higher hospital attendances. File photograph: Getty

Health services in west and northwest move to issue caution on back of rising infections

The State’s medicines regulator, the Health Products Regulatory Authority, pointed out that in many EU states expert committees have recommended use of heterologous (mixed) vaccination. Photograph: Getty Images

Vaccine mixing could play into rollout of booster shot campaign, plans for which are being examined by the HSE

Hiqa conducted 66 inspections in healthcare services in 2020

Poor infrastructure, capacity issues and workforce challenges hindered efforts in 2020, Hiqa reports

To date, the four products accepted for inclusion all contain THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis. Photograph: iStock

Nine neurologists write to Minister expressing concern over products likely to be offered

Officials are uncertain at this stage whether the rise in Covid-19 cases is the result of the reopening of indoor dining two weeks ago, or due to some other factor. Photograph: credit should read: Damien Eagers/ PA Wire

‘Concern but not alarm’ as Ireland’s incidence rate set to become one of highest in Europe

Deputy chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn: The incidence of Covid-19 disease outlook over the coming days is uncertain. Some uncertainty relates to the effect of the August bank holiday on case numbers and referral patterns. Photograph: Paddy Cummins

Daily case figure worst since January and hospitalisations greatest since April

People queuing at  the walk-in Covid-19 vaccine centre at the National Show Centre in Cloghran, Swords, Co Dublin. Photograph: Alan Betson

Taoiseach says ‘personal responsibility’ key to manage pandemic after Zappone controversy

Photograph: Enda O’Dowd/The Irish Times

Machine guides surgeons to targets deep inside brain for epilepsy and Parkinson’s treatment

‘The primary benefits of vaccinating healthy 12-15 year olds will be normalisation of life, less disruption to educational and social activities, and reduced virus transmission to vulnerable household contacts,’ claims the National Immunisation Advisory Committee. Photograph:  Kirsty O’Connor/PA

Low risk inherent but jabs for 12-15 year olds deemed social and psychological boost

At the appointment, the child will be asked if they are happy to get the vaccine. Photograph: iStock

Parent or legal guardian should attend appointment ‘where possible’

Older children were typically ill with Covid-19 for longer than primary school-aged children – the average illness duration was seven days in children aged 12 to 17 years versus five days in children aged five to 11 years.   Photograph: Getty Images

UK study finds most children experience few symptoms, and almost all recover within eight weeks

Vaccination is the biggest factor inhibiting the spread of the virus, thanks to the administration of 1.7 million doses in July, but beyond that it is unclear what is going on. Photograph: Stephen Collins/Collins

Vaccine protection evident as those not immunised make up vast majority in hospital

Government workplace protocols require physical distancing, masks, ventilation and home-working remain in place “irrespective of the vaccination rollout”. Photograph:  Dominic Lipinski/PA wire

Data commissioner rules vaccination may be ‘necessary safety measure’

Latest figures show 4,707,181 Covid-19 vaccinations have been administrated across the State, with 2,673,840 having received a first dose as of Saturday and 2,033, 341 fully vaccinated. Photograph: Getty Images

HSE to issue directive following data watchdog ruling on ‘necessary safety measure’

The reopening of indoor services was postponed amid concern over the Delta variant of Covid-19 and the advice of the National Public Health Emergency Team. File photograph: iStock

WHO’s Dr Mike Ryan says worst of pandemic over for Ireland

Mixing doses of different vaccines is safe and improves the protection offered by AstraZeneca, research has found, but Ireland has yet to sanction this approach. Photograph: Getty Images

Caution is probably best advised for those not fully vaccinated while cases continue to rise

The total number of Delta variant cases of Covid-19 reported in the Republic has more than doubled, according to latest data. File photograph: Narong Sangnak/EPA

Disease is ‘prevalent in our communities again’ says Dr Tony Holohan

With 345,342 doses administered in the week to last Wednesday, vaccination rates were down 3%. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

While overall number of hospitalisations rises 40%, ICU admissions remain stable

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said  the use of antigen testing on a ‘population-wide basis’ is under consideration.

Expectation law to enable indoor hospitality will be fast-tracked through Oireachtas next week

The European Centre for Disease Control says with adult populations largely vaccinated in many regions, increasing proportions of cases will be among children. Photograph: Getty Images

HSE in discussions with Department of Education about provision of antigen testing in schools and colleges next autumn

Paul Reid said the HSE was planning for an anticipated rise in cases by looking at a range of scenarios. Photograph: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

Modelling showed cases numbers will rise during July and probably peak in August

A health worker prepares a dose of the AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine. File photograph: Sonny Tumbelaka/AFP via Getty Images

Sean Ó Riain (62) says he is still cocooning as many 60-69-year-olds remain vulnerable

A nurse prepares a dose of the AstraZeneca  vaccine. The State’s vaccination programme has shown extreme reluctance to vary the offering to 60-somethings despite the shortcomings of the AstraZeneca shot. Photograph: Bienvenido Velasco/EPA.

Many in their 60s feel exposed to extra risk by being required to take two AstraZeneca doses

Shoppers in the centre of Bath: the UK on Monday announced it would lift almost all social distancing and mask rules as part of a wholesale reopening from July 19th. Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Ireland’s approach contrasts starkly with the UK, where further reopening is going ahead despite a sharp rise in cases and related(...)

Representatives of the hospitality industry have called for planning in advance of the current date for reopening. Photograph: iStock

Hospitality industry pushes for earlier indoor dining reopening plan

People aged 18-35 can seek an mRNA vaccine when registration opens or go to a pharmacy for a Janssen or AstraZeneca jab. Photograph: iStock

J&J and AstraZeneca vaccines at a pharmacy or longer wait for mRNA jab among options

Better funded than before, due to the crisis of the past 18 months, the HSE is also riding high in public esteem

With a jaded workforce and mounting backlogs, there have been hard lessons from the pandemic. Experts prescribe the HSE’s best rou(...)

Former health minster Simon Harris with chief operating officer for St Vincent’s Kay Connolly and former master of the hospital Dr Rhona Mahony looking at a model of the new hospital in 2017. Photograph: Collins

Compromises that once seemed secure are now in doubt and the future of the National Maternity Hospital is unclear

CervicalCheck has advised women who have had a hysterectomy they may need to continue to have screening tests.

Move follows review in Scotland which found 400 women were wrongly told they did not need to be screened

Delaying the easing of restrictions for three weeks would allow about 1 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines to be administered, half first doses and half second doses.

Analysis: Given the threat posed by the new variant it may be time to deviate from an age-based approach to vaccine rollout

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control warned the spread ‘could cause a risk for the more vulnerable individuals to be infected and experience severe illness and death if they are not fully vaccinated. File photograph: Bloomberg

Warning puts pressure on Government’s summer reopening plans and vaccine rollout

The ECDC has warned any easing of Covid restrictions could lead to a ‘fast and significant’ increase in cases, with an associated rise in hospitalisations and deaths. File photograph: Andy Rain/EPA

TDs tell Varadkar country should find way of ‘living with’ variant, as ECDC calls for caution

The delivery of a further 70,000 doses is expected next month, after which use of this vaccine is being phased out. File photograph: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

State confirms 348 cases of Covid-19, with 13 people in ICU and 41 in hospital with disease

The aim had been to give 4.5 million doses in Ireland by the end of June; with 3.5 million done so far, it looks like we might fall about 500,000 short of this target. Photograph: Kiran Ridley/Getty Images

Failure to reach targets means it will be autumn by the time all adults will be immunised

‘People who are not yet protected through vaccination should remain extra vigilant’. Photograph: iStock

HSE says cluster of cases in another class in school, which did not screen for variant

The Covid-19 vaccine rollout is now hitting its peak, with 330,000 people due to be immunised this week.

Analysis: One dose of any vaccine reduces the chance of hospitalisation from the variant by 75%

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan: ‘There are plenty of good holiday opportunities in this country.’ Photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin

CMO recommends against travel overseas unless fully vaccinated

As restrictions continue to be eased, 50% of respondents say they want the Government to proceed with the full reopening ‘as quickly as possible’. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Results show stark age divide regarding speed of reopening social and economic life

The number of beds available in the hospital system plummeted to 162 last week, from 467 the week before. File photograph: Getty

Surge in number of older, sicker patients attending EDs and admissions also rising

James Vincent McMorrow performs at a socially-distanced pilot concert  at the Iveagh Gardens in Dublin last week. Photograph: Tom Honan

Any easing should take into account infection levels, vaccination rates and other factors

Members of the public queue for vaccines at the Aviva Stadium in Lansdowne Road this week. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

All indicators of the disease are improving nationally, Nphet briefing hears

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