How should Ireland respond to the current Delta wave?
Public Meeting, Wednesday 14th July at 12pm
Once again, we are at a critical juncture in our response to the Covid-19 pandemic. There is a global surge of infection linked to the delta variant and the UK, our nearest neighbour, has decided to lift all pandemic related restrictions on personal behaviour, social mixing and economic activity from July 19th. A public meeting led by Prof Gabriel Scally, University of Bristol was held on Wednesday 14/7 to discuss the issues, and our options.
Recording of the meeting on Twitter:
Background information on the meeting:
Although the vaccination programme is going well with high uptake in older age groups and a substantial fall in deaths and admission to ICU with Covid-19, NPHET have projected over 600,000 cases and over 2,000 deaths in Ireland on a worst-case scenario from the beginning of July to the end of September. Even with more optimistic NPHET scenarios we may have over 300,000 cases and close to 1000 deaths during this period and an incalculable burden of suffering and disability from Long-Covid in children and young people.
We now have estimates that between 25% and 50% of patients with Covid-19 have significant symptoms 6-months post infection, including fatigue, breathlessness and problems with memory and concentration.
Although we are currently preoccupied with indoor dining and vaccine travel passports, we need a coherent national strategy to get us through the summer and prepare for the reopening of schools and colleges in the Autumn, with a minimum of avoidable death and suffering. We need to consider, what can and should we do now to limit the threat from the delta variant and mitigate the collateral damage to Ireland from the UK Government’s decision to lift all restrictions on July 19th?
ISAG (Independent Scientific Advocacy Group) is offering the group’s expertise and experience to work together with Governments and the people to aim for Zero Covid, meaning zero mystery cases in our shared islands. Founded by Anthony Staines, Gerry Killeen, and Tomás Ryan in June 2020, I.S.A.G. is independent of the government. All of our members are volunteers and they freely commit their time every week to discuss the COVID-19 science that underpins our governments’ response strategies. ISAG is a multidisciplinary group of scientists, academics, and researchers who have come together to advocate for a SARS-CoV-2 elimination strategy. I.S.A.G. has published several papers outlining its strategy and recommendations, and you can find them at www.isagcovid19.org