Martin says children’s outdoor activities should continue amid high levels of Covid-19

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Taoiseach Micheál Martin stressed the importance of continuing outdoor activities and sports for children despite current high levels of Covid-19 and said the government had received “no specific advice” from Nphet on the question.

His remarks come after Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn said on Wednesday that parents should consider whether their children should participate in games and sports, given the high levels of the virus.

Mr. Martin was asked if he agreed with Mr. Glynn’s suggestion that parents should limit their children’s activities.

He said he did not hear the National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) press conference, but that the advisory body’s consistent message was “to all of us in general, reigning it. a little, by monitoring our behavior regarding the wearing of masks, general socialization.

“We have not received any specific advice in relation to specific areas, rather more general advice essentially, that we as a people have to adhere to very basic guidelines.

“And if we all did this cumulatively, it would have a very beneficial effect.”

“Dangers of the next phase”

At a press conference on Thursday, Mr Martin was told it seemed contradictory that Mr Glynn was advising parents to reconsider certain extracurricular activities when it is deemed appropriate to spend extended time indoors classrooms.

Mr Martin said: “We have not received any advice from Nphet regarding children who do not participate in outdoor sports or participate in outdoor activities.

“And I think one of the dangers of the next phase is, due to the nature of our climate, that you’re going to have a lot more indoor activities and living conditions that can be a spread factor. of disease.

“I think the more we can continue to do outdoor activities, the healthier it is.”

He added: “I would also be concerned about the mental well-being of the children. It is very, very important.

Mr Martin said mental health organizations have “always expressed a concern to us about anxiety levels in adolescents and adolescents and the need to always be aware of the impact of Covid and well-being more generally. mentality of young people and children “.

Concerned about the rates of Covid-19 in children aged five to 12, Mr Martin was asked if there was a chance the schools would not return next week.

He said, “No, there is no consideration to that.

“Tuesday’s Nphet raised the issue that the incidence level among 5 to 12 year olds was much higher than the week before, so they brought this to our attention.” But no specific advice on this. “

With greater mixing expected over the next Halloween weekend, Dr Glynn advised parents on Wednesday to limit social contact over the weekend and isolate any sick children.

“People can cheat or treat, people can do the things they normally do on Halloween. Maybe don’t do it every day – maybe you don’t meet several groups of kids,” a- he declared.

He also said, “If your kids play or play sports, think about all the other activities they’re doing and just see if they need to engage in whatever they do, given how high the incidence is in the country right now.


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