Coronavirus: 61 more cases as Glynn appeals for public ‘solidarity’

No further deaths in the State were reported in official figures on Sunday

Acting chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn: ‘I know that at times we can all feel powerless against Covid-19. But we are not.’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Acting chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn: ‘I know that at times we can all feel powerless against Covid-19. But we are not.’ Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

 

No new deaths from Covid-19 have been reported in the State but a further 61 confirmed cases have been recorded, the Department of Health said on Sunday.

The death toll remains at 1,777, while there is now a total of 27,969 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Ireland.

Of the 61 new cases, 67 per cent are under 45 years of age and the gender breakdown is almost equal between male and female.

In terms of county breakdown, 39 are in Dublin, 13 in Kildare and the remaining nine cases are in Cork, Kerry, Laois, Limerick, Longford and Wicklow.

In a statement, Dr Ronan Glynn, acting chief medical officer at the department, said: “I know that at times we can all feel powerless against Covid-19. But we are not. Each of us has a range of simple tools at our disposal – knowing the risks, washing our hands, not touching our faces, keeping physically distant, avoiding crowds, limiting visitors to our homes, and wearing a face covering.

“But the most powerful tool of all remains our solidarity with one another – by encouraging each other to stick with the basic measures and by continuing to act and adapt together we can suppress the transmission of this virus once again.”

Earlier on Sunday, the Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) warned the public against purchasing Covid-19 tests and medicines which are being sold online.

Community pharmacist and IPU executive committee member Caitriona O’Riordan said: “It is vitally important that all testing for Covid-19 is centralised under the direction of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) and conducted in the National Virus Reference Laboratory to ensure first and foremost that the test result is trustworthy, and also that we have reliable national data on case levels, and contact tracing can be carried out.”

The IPU said the public must heed NPHET advice that members of the public should not purchase Covid-19 tests online or from any other retailer, as these tests may provide incorrect results.

The IPU said the ongoing problem with online medicines was highlighted by the seizure earlier this year of over 49,000 illegal medicine products by the Health Products Regulatory Authority (HPRA).

The products, worth an estimated €175,000, were seized as part of Operation Pangea, an international week of co-ordinated action between customs officers, health regulators and police from around the world, which targets the online sale of counterfeit and illegal medicines and medical devices.

The most common items found in the packages seized were large volumes of sedatives and pain relievers, as well as anabolic steroids, erectile dysfunction and teeth whitening products.

Ms O’Riordan “when purchasing medication online, all the established safety nets are bypassed”.

She added: “The dangers of purchasing medicines online have further been brought into focus following recent reports from Northern Ireland that unlicensed supposed anti-viral drugs are being bought online to treat Covid-19.

“There are huge dangers in purchasing unlicensed and unproven medicines from online sources that are unregulated and unaccountable. Anyone who has purchase these medicines online can and should instead consult with their GP or pharmacist, who can provide appropriate professional advice.”

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