The Department of Public Health Mid-West believes a community outbreak of COVID-19 in Kilmallock is linked to social activity.
20 cases have been linked to the community outbreak over the past 14 days. The cases are associated with social activity in hospitality settings, with transmission continuing into other settings such as households and workplaces.
Analysis of the outbreak found that the social activity was of a high risk nature. Those affected are believed to have engaged in close contact without masks for several hours.
The Department is urging people in the area to visit a testing centre if they experience symptoms or if they believe they may have been exposed to possible infection. They also urge all people over 16 to register for a free vaccine or to attend one of the free walk-in vaccination centres open over the bank holiday weekend.
Concerns have been expressed by the department regarding the number of people availing of hospitality while infected. Between July 19th and 25th, 41 people in the Mid-West are known to have attended a hospitality setting while infected with COVID-19.
"The number of COVID-19 cases is continuing to increase," said Dr Rose Fitzgerald, Specialist in Public Health Medicine. "We continue to see people being admitted to hospital as a result of COVID-19, some of whom in serious conditions. Complex outbreaks are more likely to occur in the coming weeks if people, especially unvaccinated people, continue to act outside the public health guidelines in social settings. I would advise everyone to continue to follow public health guidelines and to get vaccinated against COVID-19 at the earliest opportunity."