WEST Cork is performing well in its attempts to keep Covid-19 at bay, according to Tadhg Daly of Nursing Homes Ireland.
The Drimoleague man, who heads up the high-profile lobby group for nursing homes, made the comments during the fourth episode of The Southern Star Coronavirus podcast.
Speaking last week to news editor Siobhán Cronin, prior to the sad news of nine deaths in Clonakilty, Mr Daly said that, at that stage, there were just three clusters in nursing homes in the south, including Co Kerry. ‘This is testament to the nursing home sector, to its staff, owners and managers, but I suppose the community at large, listening to the advice of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) in terms of social distancing.
He added that the nursing homes sector is already highly regulated and is used to dealing with infections, albeit never before on such a huge scale.
But he also said that he felt the health service in general, and nursing homes in particular, still had ‘a journey to go yet’ before there was any light at the end of the tunnel.
‘We cannot be complacent,’ he said. He also added that he felt anyone who contracted the virus, and was in the last hours of their lives, should be allowed one family member to spend those last few hours with them.
But in many cases, the staff in the nursing homes are also the residents’ families, even though they may not be blood relatives, he said.
To hear the interview in full, search Southern Star Coronavirus Podcast on southernstar.ie. You can also watch the full podcast, which is edited by Jack McCarron, and also features music from the Covid Collective, on the Southern Star’s page on YouTube.