The deputy medical chief of the Ministry of Health, Ronan Glynn trusted that the tightening of the population containment measures announced last Friday will give results


The Irish Government believes it is on the “right track” to brake the advance of coronavirus, after verifying that the number of infected is less than expected.

The health authorities confirmed this Thursday that, as of April 1, 212 new cases of COVID-19 were diagnosed, up to a total of 3,447 positives and 85 deaths.

The deputy medical chief of the Ministry of Health, Ronan Glynn, acknowledged that it is still early to draw conclusions from those figures, but he hoped that the tightening of the population confinement measures announced last Friday will give results.

“Although there are two hundred or three hundred cases or more, we are aware that each case is a person, but 212 are less than we had anticipated,” said the expert.

He insisted that the “battle” against the coronavirus it will only “be won” when “we drastically reduce the figures”, which involves preventing “each infected individual” from “passing it on to someone else”.

“There are a number of positive indicators, such as the total number of cases detected now and the one forecast a few weeks ago, and on what we know about population surveys, their adherence to the new measures and the degree of compliance. We believe that we’re on the right track, “said Glynn.

He stressed that the “number of daily cases” has “fallen significantly in percentage terms” compared to two weeks ago, although he acknowledged that “it is still too early” to “draw definitive conclusions” and “to let down our guard”.

“I think,” he warned, “that nothing has changed the magnitude of all this or the need for all of us to take it seriously.”

In this sense, the expert regretted that the authorities are not carrying out “as many COVID-19 tests as we had anticipated.”

“As we increase testing in a very short period, for example over the next ten days or two weeks, we will get a picture of the impact this disease has on the population as a whole,” added Glynn.

Acting Irish Prime Minister Christian Democrat Leo Varadkar already ordered the closing of bars and pubs on March 15, a few days after that of schools and universities, while recommending work at home and social distancing.

Varadkar extended those limitations a week later to “non-essential services”, although he still resisted decreeing stricter confinement and activity continued, for example, in the construction sector.

Finally, the chief executive announced last Friday new restrictions on citizens for the next two weeks, such as home confinement except to carry out a series of limited activities.