Concerns have been raised over a potential Covid-19 outbreak on the Aran Islands, following a detection of a Covid-19 case on Inis Mór last week.
The case was discovered on Friday July 17. While it is only the second case of the virus on the islands - the first one did not spread throughout the population - the concern is, with the Islands re-opening, there is a greater potential for the virus to spread.
As a result, Sinn Féin Galway West TD, Mairéad Farrell, has written to the Minister for Social Protection, Community, Rural Development, and the Islands, Heather Humphries, demanding the Government "ensure there are adequate procedures and medical staff in place on the islands" in the case an outbreak occurs.
In her letter to Minister Humphries, Dep Farrell pointed out that the fact Inis Mór has only one doctor, places it in "a very vulnerable position".
'It is crucial that those living on the Aran Islands feel safe and protected'
She wrote: "Islanders are feeling extremely anxious. They are concerned about the lack of guarantees that these tourists have quarantined for 14 days. The Islands continue to be a very popular attraction particularly with US tourists, and as we know, the US continues to struggle with high volumes of Covid-19 cases.”
Dep Farrell said "the next few days will prove telling" in relation to the new case's potential spread within the community. "It is crucial that those living on the Aran Islands feel safe and protected," she said, "especially considering all the measures they took at the outset to keep their islands free from Covid 19.”