Four additional deaths related to Covid-19 and 764 new cases have been confirmed by the Department of Health today as Dr Tony Holohan issued another warning ahead of Christmas.
Seventeen of the new cases are in Galway, while 284 are in Dublin, 70 in Limerick, 52 in Donegal, 44 in Cork and 37 in Wexford.
Dr Tony Holohan said that if young people have been socialising in the past few weeks or over this weekend, they should consider their Christmas plans carefully.
“Is it responsible to meet with your family over 65 later this week, if you have not kept your contacts low?” he asked.
67% are under 45 years of age and the median age is 34 years old.
“We have particularly strong concerns about the prospect of inter-generational mixing around the festive season,” said the Chief Medical Officer.
“On 11th December the 7-day incidence rate for people aged 19-44 was 106 per 100,000 population, by yesterday this rate had more than doubled to 217 per 100,000.
“If these younger people come into contact with their loved ones over the age of 65, we could see a spike in infections in this more vulnerable group. This would lead to very a serious pattern of disease, hospitalisations, ICU admissions and unnecessary deaths.
“We have the very real prospect of COVID-19 vaccines on the horizon. Ensure that your loved ones stay alive to receive them, by keeping your distance from them if you have not restricted your movements to this point.
“As difficult as it may seem, staying away from older family this Christmas will protect them – and it would be an exceptional sacrifice made for the common good.”