Number Of COVID-19 Cases Related To Overseas Travel Has Increased 'Very Sharply', Says Ireland's Deputy Chief Medical Officer
Ireland's deputy chief medical officer, Doctor Ronan Glynn, has said that the number of COVID-19 cases related to overseas travel has increased "very sharply" recently.
As reported by rte.ie, Glynn said that more than 800 such infections have been reported in the last fortnight alone, with three quarters of them in people under the age of 35.
Glynn reportedly said in a series of Twitter posts that it is "strongly advised" that individuals should only travel on the basis of their vaccination status or immunity (having recovered from COVID-19).
Glynn reportedly said, "Public health colleagues are reporting an increasing number of cases in people who have travelled overseas very shortly after they have completed their vaccine course."
He reportedly added, "It is advised that people should not consider themselves fully vaccinated until two weeks after their Janssen vaccine, one week after their second Pfizer vaccine or two weeks after their second Moderna or AstraZeneca vaccine."
"Very Important" To Be Aware Of The Disease Profile In Your Destination
He reportedly said that if travelling, it is "very important" that people are aware of the disease profile in the area that they are visiting.
The COVID-19 situation has deteriorated very rapidly across many parts of Europe, including Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands and the UK, and Glynn reportedly said, "In Ireland, we have recorded hundreds of cases in people recently returned from these regions.
"From the 5-18 July, we recorded 676 cases in people who had returned from Spain (n=317), GB (n=188) and Portugal (n=171) in the previous fortnight.
"If you have recently returned to Ireland and have any symptoms of COVID-19 including fever, cough, headache, sore throat or a blocked or runny nose then please self-isolate and get tested without delay."
Ireland Moves Into The Red Zone
Glynn's advice reportedly comes as Ireland moves into the red zone of the latest travel map issued by the European Centre for Disease Control.
Red indicates that the 14-day cumulative case notification rate ranges from 75 to 200 and the test positivity rate of COVID-19 tests is 4% or more. It can also indicate that the 14-day rate is more than 200 but less than 500.
Parts of Europe with the highest number of cases are coloured dark red, and include parts of Spain and Netherlands.
Digital COVID Cert Helpline Issues
Meanwhile, it has reportedly been revealed that that the Digital COVID Cert Helpline was only able to deal with under 7% of the 70,000 calls received during its first three days of operating.
The Department of Health has reportedly asked that only individuals who are travelling in the next 10 days call the helpline.
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