Government considering cutting isolation time for positive Covid cases
There are "serious concerns" regarding workplace absences.
The isolation time for positive Covid cases may be reduced as Government officials seek to tackle a notable increase in work-related absences.
New plans reportedly being considered would see people given the green light to go back to work earlier, should the measure ultimately be approved.
According to the Irish Independent, there are "serious concerns" regarding the knock-on effect of the current seven-day isolation period on both public and private workforces.
Over 5,000 healthcare workers are said to be absent from work due to Covid-related reasons.
On Thursday (24 March), 23,125 new cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in Ireland by the Department of Health.
JOE has reached out to the Department of Health for comment regarding the potential isolation changes.
In recent days, Health Service Executive of Ireland (HSE) officials have expressed their own concerns about the state of hospitals as a new wave of virus transmission makes its presence felt.
According to Tánaiste Leo Varadkar – who has poured cold water on a potential return to mandatory mask-wearing – Chief Medical Officer Tony Holohan doesn't see a need for a refresh on restrictive measures.
On Wednesday, the Tánaiste said that a new group set to replace the National Public Health and Emergency Team (NPHET) is "imminent".
Varadkar said he doesn't have a precise timeline on the installation of the new team, nor has it been formally outlined who will staff it, though it is expected the group will consist of up to 12 members.
Tony Holohan is understood to be involved, and the team will reported directly to Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly.
In conversation on Morning Ireland on RTÉ Radio 1 on Wednesday, Donegal-based GP Denis McCauley urged the public to respond appropriately to the new wave of Covid, particularly in the wake of a rise in hospitalisations.
"I think there is sort of a, 'Speak to the hand' type thing – 'Problem? What problem?' – I think there is a problem. And we need to recognise it.
"The tone is, 'There's no problem here, what's the problem? Covid again? Give our heads peace.' – I think there is a problem, I think we need to do something.
"We need to change things, subtly initially, and hopefully if that works then we won't need to think about dreadful things like mandatory issues after that."
Featured Image via Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie