HSE investigating suspected Delta variant outbreak in Athlone amid "reports of house parties" 2 months ago

HSE investigating suspected Delta variant outbreak in Athlone amid "reports of house parties"

The HSE added that there is no evidence of a Covid outbreak or cases of the Delta variant in Tubber National School.

The HSE has warned members of the public of potential outbreaks of the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Athlone in Westmeath amid "reports of house parties".

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In a statement on Monday, the HSE said the Department of Public Health in the Midlands is investigating suspected cases of the variant in the area which are associated with socialising which occurred on the west side of the river on Friday 11 June.

Anybody who was socialising in that area of Athlone and is now showing symptoms is being asked to get a test. The HSE said the test can be booked online here.

“It is not clear how transmission occurred. It may be that social distancing advice was not adhered to and there have been reports of house parties that night," a spokesperson for the HSE said in a statement.

“If you have symptoms, please contact your GP, do not go to work, restrict your movements, and arrange a Covid-19 test.  Covid-19 symptoms can be as mild as a runny nose so please be very vigilant."

The HSE said that the Delta variant is very transmissible, adding that people who are not fully vaccinated may be at risk of infection.

They added that there is no evidence of a Covid outbreak or cases of the Delta variant in Tubber National School.

It comes as Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Tony Holohan issued a warning as the Delta variant accounted for 20% of Covid-19 cases in the last week.

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Dr Holohan described the increase as "concerning" as the number of patients in hospital with Covid-19 has risen slightly to 53 although the number who are in intensive care units fell to 13.

"Today’s data show a concerning increase in transmission of the Delta variant in Ireland. We estimate that Delta accounts for up to 20% of cases reported in the last week," he said on Monday.

"We have also seen a number of outbreaks associated with this variant reported in the last week."