As concerns grow over the volume of Covid-19 cases reported nationwide, new figures show that eight separate Local Electoral Areas (LEAs) in Cork recorded 14-day incidence rates of the virus that were above the national average.
According to newly released data from the Covid-19 data hub covering the 14-day period ending November 15, the LEA in Cork City North West recorded the highest 14-day incidence rate of the virus in Cork at 1,717 per 100,000 residents.
The number is well above the national average incidence rate of 1,160.7 per 100,000 population and a jump from the 14-day incidence recorded by the LEA last week of 1,164.6.
A total of 690 cases of the virus were reported in the LEA over the same period.
The Mallow LEA had the second highest incidence rate of the virus in Cork at 1,612 per 100,000 people, recording 470 cases.
It was followed by the Cork City North East LEA, which recorded a 14-day incidence rate of 1,456 per 100,000 population and 614 cases.
Cobh’s LEA had a 14-day incidence rate of 1,448 per 100,000 population and reported 494 cases, while Cork City South West’s LEA had an incidence of 1,317.8 per 100,000 of the population with 620 cases.
The Fermoy LEA had a 14-day incidence rate of 1,280 per 100,000 of the population and reported 466 cases, while the Macroom LEA had an incidence rate of 1,186.1 and reported 437 cases.
The LEA in Cork City South Central also recorded a 14-day incidence rate that was above the national average. It recorded 456 cases over the two-week period and an incidence of 1,179.3 per 100,000.
The 14-day incidence rate of the virus reported by the Kanturk LEA has fallen from 1,279.3 last week to 1,139 this week – below the national average. In the two weeks ending November 15, 284 cases of the virus were reported in the LEA.
The Cork City South East LEA had a 14-day incidence of 1,058.9 per 100,000 and recorded 453 cases, while the Midleton LEA, of which Youghal is a part, had an incidence of 1,038.7 and reported 472 cases.
The Carrigaline LEA had an incidence of 1030.1 per 100,000 and reported 362 cases, while the Bandon-Kinsale LEA had an incidence of 882.8 with 329 cases.
The LEA Skibbereen-West Cork had a 14-day incidence rate of 637.4 with 193 cases and the LEA Bantry-West Cork had an incidence rate of 570.8 per 100,000 population with 128 cases.
The Skibbereen-West Cork and Bantry-West Cork LEAs are among the ten LEAs across the country that reported the lowest 14-day incidence rates of the virus.
The LEA with the lowest incidence rate in the country was Belmullet in Mayo, with 317.5 cases per 100,000 population.
Yesterday, HSE chief Paul Reid warned that the Irish health system was under “unimaginable strain” and said the service was facing the “highest impact and risk we have had to deal with since Covid landed here”.
He said in a briefing Thursday, “The situation in our hospitals and health systems as a whole is very serious,” as they are struggling both to ensure regular care and to respond to pressure from the fourth wave of the virus.
Mr. Reid warned that the Services will face “relentless and relentless burdens” for the foreseeable future.
In response to warnings from health officials, the government announced new measures earlier this week to reverse the rising number of cases.
Pubs, nightclubs and restaurants are now forced to close at midnight and people are encouraged to work from home whenever possible starting today.
There will also be wider application of antigen testing.
In Ireland, an additional 4,650 cases of Covid-19 were confirmed on Thursday evening.