New COVID-19 restrictions

By June Shannon Coronavirus News   |   25th Aug 2020

The new COVID-19 restrictions announced last week are asking everyone to take extra care

The new restrictions announced on Tuesday (18 th of August) have been put in place in response to the fact that cases of COVID-19 have begun to increase in Ireland. They will last until the 13th of September at which time they will be reviewed.

These new restrictions aim to try to limit the further transmission of the virus.

Recent increasing cases of the virus show that the level of community transmission is on the rise and it is important to reduce this so that schools and healthcare services can reopen and we can protect the most vulnerable members of society.

" For clarity we have not recommended that older people or those who are medically vulnerable need to stay in their homes at all times,"

Dr Ronan Glynn, Acting Chief Medical Officer , Department of Health

Take extra care

While there has been a lot of confusion surrounding the new restrictions, it boils down to individual judgment and for those who are most at risk to take extra care.

We know that this is an incredibly difficult and frustrating time for everybody particularly those living with an underlying medical condition like heart disease.

The Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn said, “For clarity we have not recommended that older people or those who are medically vulnerable need to stay in their homes at all times. Rather given the increased presence of the virus in our communities we are asking everyone, but particularly those who are older or medically vulnerable, to take extra care to limit your contacts and if possible avoid public transport and shop during designated hours.”

While there has been a lot of confusion surrounding the new restrictions, it boils down to individual judgment and for those who are most at risk to take extra care.

.

People who are at very high risk

The advice for those who are at very high risk has not changed.

The HSE has advised that all those over the age of 70 and people with certain conditions, which make them “very high risk”, should continue to take additional precautions. In relation to heart disease and stroke, they include the following:

Many of these most severely affected patients are older so automatically fall into the group who should take extra precautions. Older people tend to have a less robust immune system, which makes them more vulnerable to COVID-19 if they get it, careful,

Some heart and stroke patients may also have other medical conditions such as cancer or other diseases causing or requiring immune suppression.

Visit the HSE website to see the full list of people who are listed as very high risk or medically vulnerable for more information.

If you are unsure if you fall into this category, please talk to your doctor.

Some heart and stroke patients may also have other medical conditions such as cancer or other diseases causing or requiring immune suppression.

.

People who are at high risk

Many other patients with heart disease are in a slightly lower risk category (still classed as “high risk” but not in the “very high risk” as listed above).

These patients should still take extra precautions and ensure physical distancing and avoid close contact with strangers etc.

If you are in this category you should continue to take extra care to protect yourself from COVID-19.

This means:

You do not need to self-isolate unless you have symptoms of COVID-19.

You should work from home if you are at high risk from coronavirus. If you cannot work from home and you have to go to your workplace, take extra care to:

Do not have more than 6 people from 3 different households in your home at any one time and no more than 15 people can meet up outdoors

.

Reducing community transmission

To reduce community transmission we all (not just those in high risk categories) need to keep the number of people we are in contact with as low as possible and therefore the acting Chief Medical Officer, Dr Ronan Glynn, has asked us to focus on two key numbers. These are 6 and 15.

Do not have more than 6 people from 3 different households in your home at any one time and no more than 15 people can meet up outdoors. When meeting up outdoors please remember to maintain physical distancing.

Everyone has been asked to once again work from home where possible and to avoid crowded places, public transport and places where you can’t keep 2 metres apart from other people, where possible.

We must also wear a face covering when visiting people aged 70 or over, or other vulnerable people and practice social distancing for their safety

It is also important to use face coverings in shops and shopping centres, on public transport, in private cars when sharing with someone from a different household, and in indoor spaces where physical distancing is not possible.

Face coverings are now mandatory in all shops, shopping centres and a number of other indoor areas.

.

Face coverings

Face coverings are now mandatory in all shops, shopping centres and a number of other indoor areas.

You should also wear a face covering:

You can read more about face coverings here

"As we journey through these very difficult times, the many concerns cardiac patients and their families have are very real and understandable,"

Lucinda McNerney, Southern Services Development Manager , The Irish Heart Foundation

Risk assess your environment

Speaking to the media recently, Dr Glynn said, “The core message from NPHET this week is to limit your social networks. Stick to a limit of 6 people from no more than 3 households indoors, and 15 people outdoors. Risk assess your environment and do not stay if it doesn’t feel safe. Remember that the virus wants large groups to gather together in order to spread. Do not give it the opportunity. We can continue to suppress this disease in Ireland by working together and staying apart.”

Speaking about the revised guidelines, Dr Angie Brown, Medical Director of the Irish Heart Foundation, said, “Unfortunately the recent increase in COVID-19 cases has meant that we need to try and improve our awareness and use of physical distancing, hand hygiene and avoiding crowds etc. to try and stem any further increases. We all need to be part of the solution, to be sensible and take precautions as much as we can and according to our individual circumstances.”

These are difficult times but please be assured that we at the Irish Heart Foundation are here to help and support you.

Our nurse support line is available five days a week. Anyone living with heart disease and stroke who has concerns or questions about the coronavirus can contact the nurse support line on 01 668 5001 or support@irishheart.ie.

Lucinda McNerney, Southern Services Development Manager with the Irish Heart Foundation, said, “As we journey through these very difficult times, the many concerns cardiac patients and their families have are very real and understandable.

“Our Heart Support Network is a private Facebook group where patients and their families can listen to and support each other. As a patient myself living with a heart condition, I completely empathise with those in our community. As I navigate my way through this new reality and prepare to support my children, both of whom also have a heart condition, to return to school, I will continue to take advice from our medical team and follow HSE guidelines.

Share

Facebook Twiter Email

Related Topics

coronavirus Covid-19 department of health heart disease stroke

More on Coronavirus News

Wear a face mask not a visor to help prevent COVID-19 spread

The HSE has advised that face coverings are much better than visors to prevent transmission of COVID-19

Read More

Coronavirus News   |   16th Nov 2020

COVID-19 – Life under Level 5 and social bubbles

Living with Level 5 COVID-19 restrictions and what they mean

Read More

Coronavirus News   |   21st Oct 2020

Care Free – A stroke survivor’s tale of life during Covid

Stroke survivor Joe Vanek shares his tips on ways to fly solo under the COVID cloud.

Read More

Coronavirus News   |   20th Oct 2020

COVID-19 – Children with heart conditions and back to school

Consultant paediatric cardiologist Dr Terence Prendiville on children with congenital/inherited cardiac conditions and back to school in the COVID-19 era

Read More

Coronavirus News   |   21st Sep 2020