Ed27marJust a few weeks ago restrictions were lifted and we all joined in what we hoped were the post-covid celebrations. Life began to return to some semblance of normality, the pubs and restaurants once again filled up, family gatherings resumed and we all began to relax. But the recent dramatic rise in the incidence of Covid has sounded a warning siren that we all need to pay attention to. The pressure on our hospitals is immense with record numbers on the dreaded trollies of our A & E departments, and the numbers in ICU care are once again rising.

Professor Luke O ‘Neill -a name we have all become familiar with over the past two years - has suggested that we were perhaps too hasty in discarding the face mask. As an airborne virus it transmits most easily by droplets in the air from coughing and sneezing as well as through simple speech. The latest strain of the virus known as BA.2 Covid Deltacron is known to be the most infectious variant to date, and Professor O’Neill has pointed out that it’s almost impossible to avoid.

‘This BA.2 there’s nothing like it, it’s 30% more infectious than Omicron, which is already 70% more infectious than the previous one. Yet again the spike has changed in the virus and it sticks to your lungs much more readily and hence it spreads much more quickly. He also said “that the transmissibility of the virus means that it will be difficult to stop the virus spreading — even for those who have avoided other strains thus far. ‘A great phrase I saw this morning is “BA.2 is sweeping up everyone who didn’t get Omicron”. In other words it’s almost impossible to avoid this really,’

Unlike previous variants the symptoms of infection appear within two days of contraction and it is essential that anyone with symptoms should isolate at home.

The wearing of face masks remains an effective means of preventing transmission and it seems a no-brainer that we should stick to the practice for as long as the danger remains. The past two years have been arduous and difficult for all of us and it seems that we have not quite emerged from the other end of the dark the tunnel. We may well have to make some more sacrifices before the scourge of Covid finally comes to an end. At St. Mary’s we are requesting all churchgoers to continue to wear a mask out of respect and concern for others and to use the hand-sanitizers on entering the church.

Philip Curran

St. Mary’s Lucan

March 26, 2022 - 12:08am

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