There has been a rapid rise in Covid-19 related cases in Limerick, with unprecedented demand on testing centres according to a worker at one busy centre claiming that testing centres are as busy as Christmas 2020.
They tester, who wished to remain anonymous, said “There is a notable rise in how busy it has been. When full lockdown was in place, we would test about 250-300 people a day.
“Only recently we have hit a record high of 1,400 people being tested in one day.”
Speaking ahead of the Cabinet’s meeting on Tuesday she said: “In my own opinion, as a young woman, I personally think it is time to lift restrictions.
The Cabinet met earlier today to discuss the possibility of alleviating current regulations regarding masks, proof of Covid vaccination certs and limited capacity in public venues, among other things.
They said, “We have been in and out of restrictions for almost two years and people continued to die.
“There is nothing else to wait for. The only option, I believe, is to allow the population to go back to relative normality and allow Covid-19 to spread and hopefully retreat.”
Besides working on the frontline everyday, certified testers also get an insight into people’s thoughts as a part of their job is communicating with those around them.
“People are becoming very frustrated and have been for a while. I do feel a responsibility to ensure people that we will come out the other side stronger – we are all feeling the same emotions.
“It is only normal to be sick and tired of restrictions but I don’t think testing centres will be going anywhere any time soon – the national testing league has confirmed this.”
University Hospital Limerick is also managing a high demand for services on a number of fronts, including Covid-19 patient, according to a spokesperson.
They said, “An outbreak that has impacted four inpatient wards and a surge in emergency presentations at the hospital has been sustained for several months at this point.”
The most recent collected statistics speak for themselves in terms of how many people were admitted to hospitals in the Limerick region.
“The latest available data shows that in the year to date, attendances to our Emergency Department (ED) increased by 14% on the corresponding period last year.
“Compared to 2019, there was an increase of 4% in ED and 4% in emergency admissions for the same period.”
The additional bedstock at UHL has enabled them to keep the most vulnerable patients, including those attending surgery, diagnostic investigations and outpatient appointments, safe from Covid-19 outbreaks.
The spokesperson added, “It is [however] unfortunate that the additional bed capacity has not had a more significant impact in reducing the number of admitted patients waiting for a bed,”
“The pandemic and the sustained surge in non-Covid care presenting to hospitals around the country in recent months are significant unforeseen factors.”
You can find out more about the range of services and treatments available in the University Hospital Limerick injury units on the HSE website here: https://www2.hse.ie/services/ul/hospital/universityhospitallimerick/ul01/
With the high demand for emergency services, it is recommended to only attend ED if you are seriously injured or are worried your life is at risk.