Increased COVID-19 activity in Ireland
Signals across several COVID-19 surveillance programmes indicate increased COVID-19 circulation in the community.
- In week 22 (May 29-June 04 2022), 4,675 confirmed COVID-19 cases were reported to the Computerised Infectious Disease Reporting system (CIDR), an increase of 12.8% compared to week 21 (week ending May 28th) when 4,146 confirmed COVID-19 cases notified.
- As of the 7th June 2022, the 14-day incidence rate of confirmed COVID-19 cases was 194.4/100.000, this was a 13% increase compared to the rate on 1st June 2022 (172.3/100,000).
- In week 22, a total of 30,965 SARS-CoV-2 laboratory tests were performed, of which 5,310 (17.1%) were positive. This is an increase compared to week 21, when 4,466 positive tests were reported (13.5%) positivity rate.
- In week 22, 5,668 positive antigen test results were registered on the HSE Positive Antigen Portal, an increase of 19.9% compared to week 21 when 4,728 cases were registered.
- In week 22, 33 COVID-19 outbreaks were reported in healthcare or residential settings compared to 14 in week 21.
- In week 21, a higher number of wastewater catchment areas have either stable or increasing SARS-CoV-2 viral loads compared to week 20.
Data from the HSE Performance Management Improvement Unit (PMIU) COVID-19 system showed that at 8am on Wednesday 8th June, there were 289 patients in acute hospitals that had COVID-19 infection compared to 191 the previous Wednesday. On 8th June there were 27 patients in ICU with COVID-19 infection compared to 18 patients the previous week. These data do not differentiate between those in hospital or ICU principally for the treatment of COVID-19, or for another reason. The increased circulation of COVID-19 in the population is likely due to the spread of the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron sublineages in Ireland. Results from week 22 indicate that 42% of SARS-CoV-2 cases are now likely to be the BA.4/BA.5 sublineage. These variants are replacing the previous dominant Omicron variant BA.2.
BA.4 and BA.5 are becoming the dominant variants in circulation across several European countries. This is likely to be due to their ability to evade immune protection caused by prior infection and/or vaccination, particularly if this immunity has waned over time. There is currently no indication of any change in infection severity compared to previous Omicron lineages. According to a risk assessment by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), based on the limited data currently available, no significant increase in infection severity is expected as BA.4/BA.5 become the dominant variants. However, as in previous waves, if COVID-19 case numbers increase substantially, some level of increased hospital and ICU admissions is likely to follow.
In Ireland, we have seen in previous waves that increased circulation in the community results in an increase in patients with COVID-19 in hospital, and an increase in outbreaks in nursing homes and other healthcare settings.
People should remain vigilant and follow public health advice on preventing the spread of COVID-19.
If you have any symptoms of COVID-19, even mild ones, you should self-isolate (stay in your room) until 48 hours after your symptoms are mostly or fully gone, regardless of the result of an antigen test. Certain groups of people with symptoms should get a COVID-19 test.
Completing your COVID-19 vaccination, including the booster dose, will reduce the risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19.
For advice on preventing the spread of COVID-19 and what to do if you have symptoms go to:
For information on COVID-19 vaccination, including how to get the vaccine, go to: