The Department of Health has reported 1,522 new cases of Covid-19. The number of patients being treated in hospital is 217, with 34 in ICU.
“Over the past fortnight we have reported almost 20,000 cases,” said Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan in statement issued by the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet).
“While 17 per cent of these cases were in people who are doubly vaccinated, this is entirely in keeping with what we expect as an increasing proportion of our population get vaccinated.
“It’s important to remember that this does not mean vaccines are not effective. While they will not prevent every case, they provide excellent protection against severe disease and significantly reduce the risk of hospitalisation.
“If you are awaiting or have recently received your second vaccine dose, please be aware you are not yet fully vaccinated. You will be fully vaccinated one week after your second dose of Pfizer and two weeks after your second dose of Moderna and AstraZeneca.
If you have received Janssen, you should not regard yourself as fully vaccinated until 2 weeks after,” he said.
Niamh O’Beirne, the HSE’s head of test and trace, said the figures in Ireland are similar to those that Public Health England has found with 17 per cent of new cases of the Delta variant in the four weeks to July 19th there also in fully vaccinated people.
The percentage here has increased in recent weeks but she said this may be the result of the extension of the vaccination programme into young people who face greater risk from increased social mixing.
No vaccine protects fully against getting Covid-19 and she explained that the percentage of people testing positive for Covid-19 who are fully vaccinated will continue to rise as they become a greater share of the overall population.
‘Much reduced knock-on effect’
There will, however, be a “much reduced knock-on effect” in terms of hospitalisations and ICU as a result of being fully vaccinated.
Ms O’Beirne said most people who are fully vaccinated and have Covid-19 are reporting only mild symptoms.
“Perversely it is a sign of a good vaccine rollout because you will get more cases when you have got more and more people vaccinated,” she explained.
Meanwhile, the Department of Health has told The Irish Times that 46 people have died as a result of Covid-19 between the HSE data breach on May 14th and August 3rd, a period of seven weeks.
Of those, 20 were aged between 65 and 74, nine aged between 55 and 64, seven aged between 75 and 84 and five were more than 85. Fewer than five deaths were recorded in anybody under the age of 54.
The largest number of deaths were recorded in HSE Community Health Organisations (CHO) 7 comprising of south and west Dublin and parts of Kildare and West Wicklow where 14 deaths were recorded.
CHO 8, which covers the counties of Laois, Offaly, Longford, Westmeath, Louth and Meath, and CHO 1 which covers Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim, Cavan and Monaghan recorded seven deaths each.
CHO 5 covering the areas of south Tipperary, Carlow, Kilkenny, Waterford, Wexford and CHO 9 which is Dublin, north of the Liffey, had five deaths a piece. All the other community health organisation areas recorded less than five deaths each.
Northern Ireland’s Department of Health reported a further eight deaths of people with Covid-19 on Monday and another 1,031 cases of the disease.
The total number of fatalities recorded by the department since the pandemic began now stands at 2,228.
A total of 245 people with Covid-19 were receiving treatment in the North’s hospitals on Monday, with 41 in intensive care.
More than 2.3 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines have been administered in Northern Ireland, which includes some 1.23 million first doses. Almost 85 per cent of people aged over 18 have received a first dose.
However, the uptake remains lower among younger age groups. Around 65 per cent of those aged between 18 and 29 have had their first dose, rising to 72 per cent of 30- to 39-year-olds and almost 85 per cent of those aged between 40 and 49. Virtually 100 per cent of people aged 70 and over have been vaccinated.
The North’s chief scientific Advisor on Monday emphasised the benefits of the vaccination programme and said it had led to a dramatic drop in the number of people hospitalised because of the virus.
"Back in December last year, for every 1,000 cases of Covid-19 in Northern Ireland, around 80 were admitted to hospital here," said Professor Ian Young.
“Now it’s in the region of 22 hospitalisations per 1,000 cases. That’s a dramatic reduction. Clearly, the vaccination programme has made a significant difference. Its benefits are indisputable.”
Prof Young said anyone who has not yet been vaccinated should get a jab, which would “will help us get through the current surge in cases and any further surges in the autumn and winter”.
“The more we increase our take-up rate, the more we will be able to move forward,” he said.
The Department on Monday published a Covid-19 factfile, aimed at “debunking” anti-vaccination myths, which is to be circulated online and will run alongside a UK-wide social media campaign encouraging younger people to get vaccinated.
“I have seen some people questioning the effectiveness of vaccines because the virus is still circulating and some vaccinated people are still getting it. This argument is entirely misplaced,” Prof Young said.
He said that while vaccination did not entirely eradicate the risk from Covid-19, it reduces it “substantially”.
“Getting jabbed makes it less likely you will get infected. And if you still do, it will be less likely that you get seriously ill with the virus, or will pass it on to others,” he said.
Walk-in mobile vaccination clinics are offering first dose vaccinations in a number of locations across Northern Ireland. Vaccines are also available at participating community pharmacies. Full details are available at https://covid-19.hscni.net/get-vaccinated/