Dr Breda Smyth

  • Covid-19 case numbers are continuing to fall across Mayo and Roscommon, but the figures for Galway are concerning, according to the HSE West.

    Mayo's 14-day incidence rate is now 377 per 100,000 - higher than the national average.

    Galway's 14-day is 334 per 100,000 people, and 130 per 100,000 in Roscommon.

    Galway has seen 863 new cases of the virus over the past 14 days, with 493 in Mayo.

    Director of Public Health with the HSE West Dr Breda Smyth says we was seeing a continued reduction of cases in Mayo and Roscommon, but case numbers are plateauing in Galway, which is concerning.

    She says it's very important that anyone with symptoms would self-isolate in their room immediately, and then call their GP to arrange a test.


  • There is an alarming increase in the growth rate of Covid 19 in county Mayo over the past seven days, of over 100 percent.

    From New Year’s Eve until Sunday the 3rd of January, the number of new cases of the virus in the county went from 278 to 576.

    These figures were cited today by Dr Breda Smyth, Director of Public Health HSE West 

    Dr Smyth explained that in the first wave of this pandemic the highest number of daily incidents of the virus across Mayo, Roscommon and Galway was 50.

    In the second wave, 150 cases of Covid 19 in any one day was the highest number recorded across the three county region.

    In this third wave that daily number across the three counties has risen to 500.

    The 14 day incident rate per 100,000 population in Mayo now stands at 660, that’s above the national incident rate of 582.

    Both Galway and Roscommon’s 14 day incident rate remains below the national average at 417 and 405 respectively.

  • The number of people with Covid-19 being treated in intensive care units has reached 200.

    The Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan is warning the situation in the country's hospitals is "stark".

    The total number of Covid-positive patients in hospitals across the country has risen to 2,023 with 115 admissions in the last 24 hours.

    There are currently 98 patients with Covid being treated at Mayo University Hospital - up from 80 on Saturday.

    The HSE West is warning that there continues to be a very high level of infection across Mayo, Galway and Roscommon.

    The 14-day incidence rate of the virus in Mayo is currently 1,635 per 100,000 people, with 2134 new cases recorded across Co Mayo over the past 2 weeks.

    Dr Breda Smyth, Director of Public Health with the HSE West says that, over the next 2 weeks, our hospitals and medical services will be under significant pressure.

    She says we can assist frontline workers by halting the spread of the virus in our communities.

    This means Staying at Home and Staying Safe.

    Dr Smyth is appealing to people to work from home if at all possible, and only to leave their homes for essential items and medicine.

    Anyone who has travelled here recently from Brazil or South Africa is asked to self-isolate for 14 days after their arrival into Ireland, contact a doctor and get a Covid test - whether or not they have symptoms.

  • The head of the HSE Paul Reid says an increase in mixing and mobility has led to a rise in covid cases.

    769 new cases were confirmed last night which is the highest number since the end of February.

    This included 26 new cases in Co Galway, 18 in Roscommon and 6 in Mayo.

    Health officials say while it's frustrating and disappointing, the vaccine offers hope in fighting the virus.

    Dr Breda Smyth, Director of Public Health with the HSE West, says we must continue to follow the public health advice, while the vaccination programme is being rolled out.

    Dr Smyth told Midwest News however that people across the West have already done a great job in reducing the levels of community transmission since early January....

  • Across Galway, Mayo and Roscommon, there continues to be a very high level of infection in our communities. The 14 day incidence in Mayo now stands at 1635 per 100,000people, the figure for county Galway is 1095 per 100,000, while its 925 per 100,000 population in Roscommon. 

    Dr. Breda Smyth, Director of Public Health, HSE West is appealing to the public to “Work from home if at all possible. I ask everyone in Galway, Mayo and Roscommon to Stay Home and only leave our homes and gardens for essential items and medicine.  If you have symptoms, it is extremely important to self-isolate correctly, stay in your room, call your GP and prevent spread of COVID-19 to loved ones with whom you live.  Also, if you have recently travelled from Brazil or South Africa in the previous 14 days, I am asking you to self-isolate for 14 days from date of arrival into Ireland, contact a doctor and get a COVID-19 test irrespective of whether you have symptoms.

     Over the next 2 weeks our hospitals and medical services will be under significant pressure.  We can assist our frontline workers by halting the spread of the virus in our communities.  Stay at Home and Stay Safe.”

    From Monday last (11th Jan)  to yesterday (Sun) inclusive, COVID-19 tests carried out across Community Healthcare West:-

    • Galway 3,239
    • Mayo 1,912
    • Roscommon 711.




  • Sanitising your hands before putting on, and after taking off you face covering/ mask, is very important, and is just one of a number of steps everyone can take to reduce the spread of Covid 19 across the region. That’s cording to Dr Breda Smyth HSE Director of Public Health for Galway, Mayo and Roscommon.

    Dr Smyth says there is a significant and concerning increase in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases being reported across counties Galway and Roscommon in particular, and so now more than ever, we must double down on our efforts to contain it.

    She is urging young people to meet in small groups, stay apart and download the COVID Tracker app. There is still time to get the virus back under control in this region, but she says, we have to stay united in our efforts to tackle the infection and know that the actions of each and every one of us have a part to play in reducing its spread.

     Dr Smyth, a native of Straide, has been speaking to Midwest News today.

  • People across the region are being asked to think carefully about the number of people they see in the run-up to Christmas Day.

    Dr Breda Smyth, Director of Public Health in the West, and Straide native, says it’s vitally important that everyone limits the number of interactions with others.

    Thanksgiving in the US and a similar family celebration in the Netherlands (Sinterklaas), indicate that  one day of mixing with older loved ones can given rise to increased number of hospitalisations and deaths.

    We can prevent this, she says, by ensuring we are not carrying the virus and that we have reduced our contacts in thedays leading up to Christmas Day.

     The latest national data published last night highlights that the number of cases is increasing more rapidly than had been anticipated. This increase in cases is particularly worrying in the context of inter-generational mixing over the Christmas period. We have seen the 7-day incidence rate for people aged 19-44 more than double since 11 December from 106 per 100,000 population to 217 per 100,000.

    If people are meeting on Christmas Day there are a number of important measures that you should try to follow:

     Encourage guests to use hand sanitiser or to wash their hands when they arrive at your home and repeat this hourly over the course of the day:

            Avoid hugs, kisses and handshakes as people arrive.

            Everyone must wear a mask, including hosts.

            Don’t share items like crockery and glass ware. Don’t share food and avoid buffet style set ups.

            Keep the number of people in the kitchen to a minimum, and wear masks when preparing and serving food.

            The risk of transmission increases when we take our mask off to eat. Therefore, try to seat households together and spaced from other households.

            Allow extra space at the dinner table - extra distance between guests will make sure everyone is comfortable and safe.

            Keep your home and spaces where people are gathering ventilated, keep windows and doors open where possible.

            Incorporate a walk together into the day and try to spend some time outside.