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Leo: Covid cases in hospital counted even when patients admitted for other reasons

Tanaiste Leo Varadkar has admitted that at least some Covid-19 hospital cases were from patients admitted to hospital with totally unrelated conditions, and called for greater accuracy in reporting from NPHET.

Up until now, if someone is admitted to hospital for a non-virus related condition – for example, a broken leg – but tests positive for Covid-19 while there, they are marked down as a Covid hospitalisation – even if they have little to no Covid symptoms.

The Fine Gael leader said that this way of measuring cases should change.

“There are essentially three categories and we should be able to quantify them,” he said.

“The first are those admitted with Covid and being treated for it; the second category are those admitted with something else but who got Covid in hospital and are now being treated for it, and the third are those admitted for something else, who were swabbed and found positive, but who are not being treated for it.”

A letter from the Department of the Taoiseach asserts that daily case numbers should only reflect people who go to hospital specifically because they had severe Covid-19 symptoms.

According to the Irish Independent, some ministers privately believe that at least 10% of Covid-19 reported patients have no serious symptoms.

“We don’t know the actual level. It could be higher than that,” one minister told the Independent.

Additionally, Tony Canavan from Saolta group told Morning Ireland last week that the vast majority of Covid patients in his hospitals had tested positive after admission for something else.

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