Letterkenny University Hospital where provisions are in place for Coronavirus PICTURE: GERALDINE DIVER
The HSE has confirmed that it has measures in place to respond, and is well prepared in the event of a case of coronavirus being detected in Donegal.
Protocols have been put in place at Letterkenny University Hospital this week to deal with any potential cases of the deadly virus which has spread to 19 countries and territories worldwide, with 6,152 confirmed cases and 132 deaths as of yesterday, Wednesday.
It is understood, as in all cases like this, the hospital has set aside a Medical Assessment Unit which is located just off the casualty ward.
It contains two isolation rooms in the eleven bed unit situated in the new section of the hospital beside the Accident and Emergency department.
A spokesperson for the Saolta University Health Care Group which provides acute and specialist hospital services to the West and North West of Ireland counties including Donegal, said the HSE in the North West is following national guidance and information has been sent to all hospitals, GPs and private healthcare providers.
“There are no confirmed cases of novel coronavirus in Ireland to date,” the spokesperson said.
“The risk to the public in Ireland remains low. However the criteria, (as defined by the World Health Organisation), which are used to decide whether a person has contracted coronavirus, combined with increased surveillance, will lead to some individuals being triaged and/or tested as necessary from time to time.”
The spokesperson added that the HSE could not comment on individual cases nor comment on speculation.
“The HSE Health Protection Surveillance Centre is updated daily at midday with the latest information about the novel coronavirus and has measures in place to respond and is well prepared in the event of a case in Ireland.”
The outbreak investigations are on-going internationally and as this is an emerging, rapidly evolving situation, updated information will be provided as it becomes available. There is no specific treatment for disease caused by the virus but many of the symptoms can be treated and therefore treatment is based on the patient’s clinical condition.
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