Ireland sees Covid cases spike despite high vax rate

Ireland’s daily Covid-19 caseload has set another record since the breakout of the current wave of infections which started last month, despite achieving a higher vaccination rate.

There were 1,828 new confirmed cases reported in Ireland on Saturday, Xinhua news agency quoted the Department of Health as saying.

This is the second day in a row that Ireland reported a record high of cases in the current wave, according to the statistics from the department.

“The 14-day incidence rate in Ireland has increased to 386 per 100,000 population, that’s the highest it’s been since early February,” said Ronan Glynn, deputy chief medical officer with the Department of Health

After the number of daily cases in Ireland surpassed the 1,000-level in mid-July for the first time in more than five months, it has remained above that figure for 22 days in a row.

In the week ending on July 26, Ireland reported over 9,000 confirmed cases, far more than the highest weekly numbers recorded in the first and second wave of infections, which hit the country in April and October of last year.

The resurgence in Ireland comes at a time when the country has made notable progress in vaccinating the population against Covid-19.

Paul Reid, head of the Health Service Executive, a state agency in charge of Ireland’s vaccination program, said on Saturday that 77 per cent of adults have been fully vaccinated, an increase of almost five percentage points from the end of last month when Prime Minister Micheal Martin announced that 72.4 per cent of adults in his country had been fully vaccinated.

“The level of uptake (of Covid-19 vaccine) across all age groups in Ireland is high by international comparisons,” said the Cabinet Committee on Covid-19, adding that nearly 85 per cent of people aged 16 and over in the country have either registered or received at least one dose of vaccine.

According to the Committee, over six million doses have been administered in Ireland and 3.2 million people out of the country’s total population, estimated at five million, have received the first doses while 2.85 million people have been fully vaccinated.

It said that the incidence of serious illness, hospitalisations, intensive care unit admissions and mortality in the current wave are lower than the previous waves, and vaccination has played an effective role in lowering these figures.