By Carmel Hayes
PORTLAOISE hospital has been Covid-free for five successive days.
For the first time since early March, there have been no virus patients at the hospital since last Wednesday.
Today’s HSE report shows that the hospital was still free of the virus at 8pm last night, Sunday 2 May. There were ten vacant general beds, while one bed was available in ICU.
The number of Covid patients in Portlaoise reached zero last Wednesday 28 April, for the first time since 6 March.
Unfortunately, the respite proved brief as another Covid patient was admitted on 8 March and numbers continued to rise until April, before declining gradually throughout the month.
At the height of the third wave in January, the Laois virus incidence was just over 1,000 per 100,000 people and Portlaoise hospital had a record 25 Covid patients, including nine in ICU.
The 14-day virus incidence in Laois last Friday, the latest county breakdown available, was 70.8 per 100,000 people, well below the national average of 127.3.
Laois had the third highest Covid rate in Ireland in early April but was ninth lowest last Friday, at 18th of the 26 counties.
All figures are from the HSE Covid-19 Daily Operations Updates for Acute Hospitals, which record patient numbers at 8pm each night in hospitals nationwide.