Covid-19: One in six hospitalised patients in Letterkenny hospital

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

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

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

 

One in six patients hospitalised with Covid-19 this week is in Letterkenny University Hospital, close to a “hot-spot” of cases in Co Donegal.

There were 10 Covid-19 patients in the hospital on Wednesday, out of a total of 60 nationally, new Health Service Executive (HSE) figures show.

The Mater hospital in Dublin had eight Covid-19 patients, Connolly hospital had seven and 11 hospitals had no patients with the disease.

The current 14 day rates in Donegal and Dublin are higher than expected relative to the national rate, and the rate in Cork is lower than expected relative to the national average, according to the HSE report.

Covid-19 rates in Buncrana, in north-east Donegal, are running at seven times the national average.

Overall, the number of hospitalised patients grew 40 per cent last week, though ICU numbers remained stable.

With new case numbers up 29 per cent in a week, the report forecasts an average of 521 cases a day by July 20th. ICU admissions are forecast to remain stable during this period, at an average of four per week.

“As the Delta variant becomes the dominant variant in Ireland, this report demonstrates some worrying trends,” the authors write.

With incidence up 21 per cent, there are “particularly high” rates among 19-24 year-olds and a “large increase” in cases among 13-18 year-olds, compared with the previous week.

Cases among older people also rose, though from a very low base, with less than 1 per cent of cases occurring among people aged over 75 years.

“While the relaxation in social restrictions would be expected to lead to an increase in cases in younger non-vaccinated groups, the increase in other age groups seen here (albeit small) and the increase in hospitalisations means that we must keep a very close eye on this data for the next period.”

Ireland has the sixth highest incidence of the virus out of 31 European countries, according to the report. This is likely due to the dominance of the more transmissible Delta variant here.

With 345,342 doses administered in the week to last Wednesday, vaccination rates were down 3 per cent.