There were 208 new cases of Covid-19 nationally including 108 in Dublin and no further deaths reported on Monday, according to figures released by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET).
Of the cases 62 per cent are aged under 45 years. Aside from Dublin 18 cases are in Louth, 12 in Donegal, 10 in Meath, 9 in Kildare, 8 in Waterford, 7 in Cork, 6 in Limerick, 6 in Wexford and the remaining 24 cases are located in Carlow, Cavan, Clare, Galway, Kilkenny, Laois, Longford, Mayo, Roscommon, Tipperary, Westmeath and Wicklow.
Acting chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn said NPHET has decided to reduce the period of isolation from 14 to 10 days for confirmed cases from the onset of symptoms, based on advice received from the Expert Advisory Group following a review of the evidence.
He also said NPHET has agreed that nasal swabs are an acceptable alernative for children to the invasive nasopharyngeal swab
“This will hopefully make testing a simpler process for children going forward,” he said.
Under new isolation guidelines, patients who test positive for the virus are being advised to self-isolate for “a minimum of 10 days” from the onset of symptoms. They must also go five days without fever.
Where a person with Covid-19 symptoms tests negative, they are advised to self-isolate until 48 hours after resolution of their symptoms.
New guidelines for children aged under 13 years provide for testing based on nasal swabs, rather than the current nasal/throat swabbing currently in place.
The new advice is contained in revised guidelines for GPs from the HSE and the Health Protection Surveillance Centre.
The change from 14 days to 10 does not apply to contacts of confirmed cases who have been tested, or to people arriving from countries other than those on the Government’s green list. These groups are still required to restrict their movements for 14 days.
Meanwhile, the latest update from the European Centre for Disease Control shows the incidence of the disease is twice that in Germany of Sweden.
Ireland is reporting a 14-day incidence of 45.4 to the ECDC, compared with 21.7 in Germany and 22.7 in Sweden.
Most countries in Europe are experiencing a rise in cases at present – with the UK reporting an incidence of 51.1 and Spain having the highest rate, at 270.7.