Over 1,500 Covid cases in nursing homes, community hospitals since start of year

No fatality rate is available as yet for the current wave driven by the Omicron variant

Over 1,500 residents of nursing homes and community hospitals have been infected with Covid-19 since the start of the year, new figures show.

The number of outbreaks in these locations, along with the size of outbreaks, has grown this month, according to an update from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre.

There were 61 outbreaks in these residential settings between January 9th and 15th, similar to the 64 recorded the week before. This is about 10 times the number recorded in December.

Hospital Report

The number of cases associated with last week’s outbreaks was 759. This is three times the peak recorded last autumn during the fourth wave of the pandemic, but only one-third of the peaks in the first and third waves.

The biggest single outbreak involved 47 cases, according to the HPSC.

It said the median outbreak size was nine so far this January, compared to five in December.

Among residents aged 65 and over, 24 per cent of cases died in the first wave of the pandemic, but this fell to 12 per cent in the fourth wave last autumn, after most had been vaccinated. No fatality rate is available as yet for the current wave driven by the Omicron variant.

One flu death was reported last week, the first of the year, the HPSC said, while eight hospitalised cases were notified. One of these was admitted to critical care.

Overall flu activity increased slightly on the previous week with 16 new cases reported. Flu activity is also increasing across Europe.