Three of the six electoral areas of Co Mayo continue to show coronavirus infection rates that are above the national average, new official figures show.
Claremorris has overtaken Swinford as having Mayo’s highest infection rate, with 357 cases per 100,000 in the period from February 16 to March 1. That compares poorly against the national average of 201. In real terms, 97 positive cases of Covid-19 were recorded in the Claremorris area during that 14-day period.
Swinford’s infection rate is now 295 per 100,000 based on 51 positive cases over the course of the same two weeks, with Castlebar also above the national average having recorded 76 confirmed Covid-19 cases which equates to 253 per 100,000.
Ballina’s infection rate is 143 per 100,000 based on 36 positive cases.
Westport’s infection rate is 131 per 100,000 based on 24 positive cases.
Belmulet’s infection rate is 64 per 100,000 based on 8 positive cases over the same 14-days.
Meanwhile, Galway City Central has the highest coronavirus infection rate in Ireland. It recorded 768 cases per 100,000 during February 16 to March 1, more than three times the national average. This has dropped from last week when the area had a rate of 1,292.
Many of the cases in Galway are thought to be linked to outbreaks among third-level students.
The latest Covid-19 data from local electoral areas in the Republic and postcode areas in the North show how the disease is spreading in different communities.
Both sets of statistics use the incidence rate of infection per 100,000 population, giving a better understanding of an outbreak than straight case numbers.
Listowel, Co Kerry recorded only six cases over the previous two weeks.
In the North, the BT77 postcode in Co Tyrone and BT3 area of Belfast recorded no new cases during the 14-day period.
The 14-day rate across the Republic is 201 per 100,000 population, down from 240 last week and 269 the previous week.
Meanwhile, the head of the HSE said the Republic’s incidence of Covid-19 is continuing to improve, but “at a slower rate”.
Paul Reid said positive signs of the impact of vaccinations for older people were beginning to emerge.
“Of the new cases notified over the past two weeks, 478 cases had the most likely transmission source of a healthcare setting,” he said.
“That is down from over 1,050 cases in the previous two weeks.”
Mr Reid said hospital admissions were reducing, not at the pace he would like, but a continued trend downwards was being recorded.
The chief executive acknowledged the issues in the rollout of the vaccines in the past week, and said there would continue to be “interrupted supply lines” in the coming weeks.
“We’ve been advised by AstraZeneca on changes to their committed supply lines to us over a three-week period ie last week, this week and next week,” he said.