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COVID-19 #coronavirus updates

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) a public health emergency of international concern. Ireland is well-positioned to detect and respond to cases of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It’s caused by a virus called coronavirus.

The following measures are currently in effect:

  • Schools, colleges and childcare facilities are closed
  • Indoor mass gatherings of 100 people or more and outdoor mass gatherings of more than 500 people should be cancelled
  • All State-run cultural institutions are closed
  • All pubs have been advised to close
  • People have also been asked not to have house parties
  • Where it is possible to work remotely people should do so
  • Public transport will continue

A rundown of the new restrictions announced by the government on Tuesday, March 24th 2020:

  • Only go to the shops for essential items.
  • People can go outside for physical activities.
  • No gatherings of more than four people, unless from the same household.
  • From midnight, theatres, club, gyms/leisure centres, hairdressers, betting shops, marts, markets, casinos, bingo halls are to shut.
  • All cafes and restaurants should limit supply to takeaways and deliveries only.
  • All non-essential retail outlets to close.
  • An increased presence of rangers and gardaí in parks.
  • Hotels to limit occupancy to essential non-social and non-tourist business.
  • All sporting events cancelled.
  • All scheduled cruise ship travel to Ireland not going ahead.
  • All places of worship to restrict numbers entering at any one time.
  • All crowded places, including public amenities, should be avoided.
  • All organised social indoor or outdoor events of any size are not to take place.
  • All holiday/caravan parks to close.

From midnight March 28th the following restrictions will be in place until Easter Sunday on 12 April.

Everybody must stay at home in all circumstances except for the following:

  • To travel to and from work for the purposes of work only where the work is essential health, social care or other essential service or cannot be done from home a list of these will be provided.
  • To shop for food or household goods or collect a meal.
  • To attend medical appointments or collect medicines and other health products.
  • For vital family reasons such as providing care to children, elderly or vulnerable people.
  • To take brief individual personal exercise within 2km of your own home which may include children from your own household as long as you adhere to 2-metre physical distancing.
  • 2km travel limit does NOT apply to food shopping.
  • For farming purposes that is food production and care of animals.
  • All public and private gatherings of any number of people outside a single household or living unit are prohibited.
  • This prohibition includes social family visits that are not for vital reasons already mentioned.
  • Adult community education centres and local community centres will be shut
  • All non-essential surgery and health procedures and all other non-essential health services will be postponed.
  • All visits to hospitals, residential healthcare settings and prisons are to cease, with specific exceptions on compassionate grounds.
  • Shielding or cocooning will be introduced for all those 70 years of age and specified categories of people who are extremely vulnerable to Covid-19.
  • Travel to our offshore islands will be limited to residents of those islands.
  • Pharmacists will be permitted to dispense medicines outside of the current period of validity with an existing prescription in line with the pharmacists’ clinical judgement.
  • All public transport and passenger travel will be restricted to essential workers and people providing essential services.
  • Outside of the reasons listed there is to be no travel outside a 2km radius of your home for any reason.

Financial measures

  • A temporary wage subsidy of 70% of take-home pay up to a maximum weekly tax-free amount of €410 per week to help affected companies keep paying their employees. This is the equivalent of €500 per week before tax.
  • Workers who have lost their jobs due to the crisis will receive an enhanced emergency Covid-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment of €350 per week (an increase from €203)
  • The Covid-19 illness payment will also be increased to €350 per week
  • The self-employed will be eligible for the COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment of €350
  • Enhanced protections for people facing difficulties with their mortgages, rent or utility bills it follows from a range of supports already in place to help business through the crisis
  • An eligible employer will be supported up to 70% of an employee’s take-home income up to a maximum weekly tax-free payment of €410 (i.e. 70% of take-home weekly income of €38,000 per annum).
  • The scheme will provide support on incomes up to €76,000 or twice average earnings. It will be capped at net €350 for incomes between €38,000 and €76,000.
  • The employer is expected to make best efforts to maintain as close to 100% of normal income as possible for the subsidised period.

Read more about the public health measures for COVID-19 including an explanation of social distancing, self-separation, self-quarantine and self-isolation.

The latest information, advice and guidelines will be published here and will be updated frequently. We will be continually updating our social accounts with the ways in which the community are coming together and responding to the crisis.

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for the very latest updates. 

Protect yourself and others 

If you develop symptoms of COVID-19 you will need to self-isolate and phone your GP. The people in your household need to self-quarantine. Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. The GP will assess you over the phone. If they think you need to be tested for coronavirus, they will arrange a test. HSE helpline can be reached by calling: 1850 24 1850 or (041) 6850300.

Other Related News 

On St. Patrick’s Day – Tuesday, March 17th 2020 An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar delivered a Ministerial Broadcast to the country about the Covid-19 pandemic. Read the full speech here

Irish Government’s Action Plan

The Government has already signed off a 3 billion euro package for health, social welfare and business. The Irish Government’s Action Plan for confronting COVID-19 (Coronavirus) can be downloaded here.

Other important updates 

  • Health officials warn 4-5 day wait for Covid-19 tests
  • Minister Donohoe outlines further measures to support Individuals and businesses impacted by COVID-19. Read more here.
  • Some supermarkets will be exclusively open to the elderly & disabled. These hours will help improve access during this time of unprecedented demand. Please check your local supermarkets for specific times: aldi.ie, supervalu.ie, tesco.ie or eurospar.ie.
  • ALONE launch a COVID-19 support line for older people Working in collaboration with the Department of Health and the HSE. The support line will be open Monday to Friday, 8 am-8 pm, by calling 0818 222 024, and hours may be extended to meet the demand. Read more here.
  • ‘Fake news’ undermining the world’s response to the coronavirus. Read more here.
  • The measure has been announced by Minister for Education Joe McHugh regarding the Leaving Certificate and Junior Cycle Oral and Practical Performance Tests: Oral exams were due to begin on 23 March but have now been cancelled. The oral assessment is worth 40% of overall marks in Irish, and 25% in modern European languages. The deadline for submission of practical and coursework for the leaving cert has been extended to 15 May. No decision has yet been made in relation to when schools might reopen, or on June’s leaving certificate exams. Read more here.
  • People in #Kerry need your help! localsupport.ie is joining local volunteers with people in need. Please sign up on the site if you can help or need help. Helpline Text: 087 3658233. 
  • Minister Ring launches COVID-19 Government Action Plan to support the community response. For information on volunteering, please visit https://www.volunteer.ie/. Read more here.
  • Support for businesses impacted by COVID 19 through commercial rates deferral. Read more here.
  • The Irish Men’s Sheds Association (IMSA) has called on its members and the public to contact people at risk of social isolation. Read more here.
  • AIB has suspended the planned introduction of maintenance and transactions fees.
  • Bank of Ireland to temporarily close 101 branches. The Killorglin branch is included in this temporary closure. Nearest options for customers needing branch assistance (or lodging) would be Tralee, Killarney or Caherciveen. Read more here.
  • Government confirms supports for employers and business continuity. Read more here.
    A six-month moratorium on interest and repayments on new Microfinance Ireland COVID-19 loan. Read more here.
  • An Post has announced that there will be changes for some customers to delivery times from Monday, March 23rd as it introduces staggered working time for staff during the coronavirus outbreak. Read more here.
  • General Travel Advisory for Irish citizens travelling overseas. Read more here.
  • Government announce significant new restrictions. Read more here.
  • The Government announced a National Covid-19 Income Support Scheme. Read more here.
  • Covid-19 Public Information Booklet to be delivered to every household nationwide. Read more here.
  • An Post – Helping Connect our Community. Read more here.
  • The banking industry is aiming to increase the contactless payment limit from €30 to €50 by Wednesday, 1 April.
  • It has been announced bus and train timetables will be scaled back to 80% from next week due to reduced demand and social distancing.
  • Taoiseach Leo Varadkar outlines further Covid-19 measures, says everybody must stay at home from midnight tonight until Easter Sunday, 12 April.
  • The Government has updated the list of retail outlets which it has deemed essential enough to remain open despite the new Covid-19 restrictions. Read more here.
  • All Kerry County Council offices and buildings will be closed to public access but essential services will continue to be provided by our staff. The Council can be contacted by phone and email via kerrycoco.ie/contact-us/.
  • There are 3 ways to access the new Community Response:  Call Freephone 1800 807 009, text ‘SUPPORT’ followed by your name to 50555 or email covidsupport@kerrycoco.ie.
  • The Web Summit has donated €1,000,000 to ChangeX, who will then identify, fund & spread projects aimed at strengthening #Ireland’s response to #COVID19. They are calling on people across Ireland to take grassroots action by starting or joining new projects in their neighbourhoods and households between April & June. Do you have a solution in response to the crisis that should be in every community in Ireland? Well, submit it here.
  • Ireland launches “The Community Call” in major nationwide volunteering effort. Read more here.
  • New Government webpage is available to receive offers of Covid-19 assistance. Read more here.

Killorglin specific updates

The #coronavirus outbreak will prove to be a lonely and difficult time for some of us and it’s a crucial time to make sure we’re checking up on older neighbours or family members who could be at risk while following the Department of Health’s advice particularly in relation to practising social distancing. You could create a messaging group to keep in touch with family, friends or neighbours.

Group messaging service offers free and secure calls and messages to anyone, anywhere:

  • Download WhatsApp here
  • Download Viber here
  • Download Skype here

Using social media to get some good tips and practical ideas

Why not take a look at social media as people genuinely have shared some good tips and practical ideas about rural isolation or if someone who is in self-isolation.

We’re all in this together!

Day to day we know that our fantastic local community in Killorglin rallies around to support one another. These tough times are bringing increased demand on us all. Do you have a community initiative you are leading/getting involved in e.g. Meals on Wheels and want some help? Please see how we can help here.  

Here’s an example of some locals doing good 

COVID-19 & your Business

We know that the COVID-19 crisis is presenting immediate and severe financial challenges for businesses so we have put together some practical hints, tips, supports and links to help you along the way. Read more here.

Coronavirus is hurting small businesses. Here’s how to help

Small businesses are feeling the effects of the #coronavirus outbreak. The sectors most negatively affected by coronavirus-related closures include hospitality, arts and recreation, retail and personal services. Supporting local and small businesses is vital during these uncertain times. While the government has pledged financial support to help small businesses, customers also play a role in helping them survive.

When it comes to supporting local businesses why not: 

  • Order take-out or delivery (if they offer it)
  • Buying gift cards for future use
  • Prepaying for future appointments in the services sector like a barber, hair or beauty salon
  • Buy a product or service from a local retailer or service provider online

Small businesses are community members… and they’re also a resilient group of people so let’s show our support in these tough times.

Please feel free to utilise our comprehensive business directory and map when searching for a local service. Click here to view.

A list of local businesses that we’re currently aware are operating during COVID-19 (Coronavirus) is available here.

Killorglin.ie helping promote local businesses during these unprecedented times

If you’re a local business trading please see here how we can help you through these difficult times.

Pharmacies

Postal services

An Post has announced that there will be changes for some customers to delivery times from Monday, March 23rd as it introduces staggered working time for staff during the coronavirus outbreak. Read more here.

Bank of Ireland contact details may be useful

Business customers

  • Our Branch Business Specialist is: (Michael McCarthy 086 2809000)
  • The Coronavirus Helpline for Business Customers  (Tel: 0818 200 348)
  • New Business Loans (Tel: 1890 36 52 22)
  • Bank of Ireland Finance (Tel: 1850 29 19 29)

Personal customers

  • Our Branch Mortgage Specialist is: (Trevor Farry 087 4643198)
  • New Mortgages (Tel: 1890 365 100 – Option 4)
  • Customer Mortgage Moratorium Requests (Tel: 01 6113333)
  • New Personal Loans & Overdrafts (Tel: 1890 365 100 – Option 2)

Mortgage, loans and rent

On 18 March 2020 the 5 retail banks (AIB, Bank of Ireland, KBC, Permanent TSB and Ulster Bank), along with their representative body Banking & Payments Federation Ireland (BPFI) announced a series of measures to support people and businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

These include:

  • A payment break of up to 3 months for businesses and personal customers. If you want to request a payment break, you should contact your bank directly
  • A simplified application process to make it easy for businesses and personal customers to get support from their bank
  • A solution to ensure that COVID-19 applications for a payment break will not affect credit ratings
  • Deferral of court proceedings for 3 months

COVID-19 Information for Employers and Employees

The Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection has a range of measures to provide income support to people affected by COVID-19 (Coronavirus) click here to access the dedicated support pages.

Social welfare payments

All social welfare payments currently in payment will be paid as usual.

Special arrangements have been put in place for post office customers getting pensions and payments from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP). If you can’t collect your DEASP payment personally at your post office, you can nominate a person (Temporary Agent) to collect the payment on your behalf. The person collecting the payment must bring your Public Services Card (this is also your Free Travel Pass), and their own valid photographic ID like a passport, driving licence or Public Services Card. Download the Temporary Agent form (pdf).

The new COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Payment is for people aged between 18 and 66 who has lost employment related to coronavirus.

The enhanced Illness Benefit payment is for people aged between 18 and 66 who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or who have been medically required to self-isolate. You can read general information about social welfare payments and coronavirus.

The DEASP has an income support helpline for people impacted by the coronavirus. The information team can advise on the most suitable income supports for your circumstances and give information about how to apply. Call (01) 2481398 or 1890800024

Support services available 

  • ALONE, the organisation that supports older people, launched a national support line and additional supports for older people who have concerns or are facing difficulties during the coronavirus restrictions. The support line will be open Monday to Friday, 8 am-8 pm, by calling 0818 222 024, and hours may be extended to meet demand.
  • SeniorLine provides a Freefone service every day of the year 10 am-10 pm, including all public holidays. Callers concerned about coronavirus will get the most up-to-date guidance recommended by Government sources. You can contact Senior Line on 1800 80 45 91.
  • The Alzheimer Society of Ireland provides advice and support for vulnerable people living alone (pdf) during the coronavirus pandemic. While the group does not offer personalised medical advice, their service can direct you towards reliable sources of information. You can contact the Alzheimer National Helpline team on 1800 341 341, by email at helpline@alzheimer.ie or via Live Chat at alzheimer.ie.
  • The Age Action Information Service also provides a service for older people to ensure that they can access accurate and timely information about the virus. The service is available Monday to Friday 9.30 am—5 pm on 01 4756989.
  • Volunteer Ireland is working to recruit and register volunteers during the coronavirus pandemic.
  • If you are a cancer patient or a former cancer patient, you can get information and advice from the Irish Cancer Society.
  • The Citizens Information Phone Service (CIPS) is funded and supported by the Citizens Information Board to provide a comprehensive and confidential telephone information service. You can contact CIPS by phone from 9 am to 8 pm, Monday to Friday, on 0761 07 4000. CIPS also operates a Live Advisor instant chat service for people with hearing and speech difficulties and others who have difficulty communicating by telephone. Live Advisor is available between 9 am and 5 pm (Monday to Friday).
  • Text LGBTI+ to 086 1800 280 anytime when you need support about any time of crisis, you can chat in confidence, 24/7 with a trained crisis volunteer over text.
  • ‘Teentxt’ is a live one-to-one text messaging support service for young people up to the age of 18 – text the word ‘Talk’ to 50101.
  • Childline is Ireland’s 24-hour national listening service for young people up to the age of 18 – freephone 1800 666666.
  • The HSE has issued useful and practical information and advice for people on how to maintain positive mental health during the pandemic.
  • The Aware Support Line service (1800 80 48 48) is available to anyone, over 18, who is seeking support and information about issues relating to their own mood or the mood of a friend or family member, or who experiences depression or bipolar
  • Samaritans offer emotional support 24/7, 365 days a year on freephone 116 123, by text 087 260 90 90 and by email jo@samaritans.ie
  • GP Out of Hours Service. The out of hours service is for patients with urgent medical problems who need to contact a doctor after GP surgeries close.
  • Drugs.ie provides drug and alcohol information and support for teenagers, parents and carers.
  • THE HSE Drug and Alcohol helpline – 1800 459 459 – provides a free confidential place where you can talk through your concerns about drugs or alcohol and get information about services.
  • HSE helpline can be reached by calling 1850 24 1850 or (041) 6850300.

Search for online resources and information about services delivered online, by telephone and face-to-face here.

Bored? 

Why not #createdontcontaminate? RTÉ 2FM want you to create content from your homes. The initiative hopes to kickstart a movement to keep young people’s energy and spirits up while keeping their families and communities safe. Tag @RTE2FM using #CreateDontContaminate when sharing.

Keep active with Joe Wicks workouts daily at 9 am

RTÉ Home School Hub

Check out the RTÉ Home School Hub, it’s where teachers present three short class segments aimed at primary school students. Watch live via the RTÉ Player here.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) useful supports

Below are some useful supports from the Health Service Executive:

COVID-19 #coronavirus General Hygiene Video 

COVID-19 Information Booklet

Download the Information Booklet here.

Listen to an audio version of the COVID-19 information booklet on Soundcloud here.

More information

Remember we are in this together… Let’s show the world how we react in a crisis and that we are kind and not selfish!

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