Ireland reports 101 COVID-19 deaths in highest daily total

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Outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in Dublin

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland reported 101 deaths related to COVID-19 on Tuesday, the highest number of deaths confirmed in a single day since the start of the pandemic, exceeding the previous peak of 93 from Jan. 19.

The daily death toll is published by the National Public Health Emergency Team and can include fatalities that took place weeks ago but were just confirmed to authorities on the day in question.

The team said 83 of the deaths reported on Tuesday occurred in January, with 18 occurring in February.

The high death rate follows a sharp increase in infections in the first month of the year following a relaxation of public-health measures over the Christmas season.

"This is the highest number of deaths we have reported on any single day of the COVID-19 pandemic so far," said Ireland's Chief Medical Officer Dr. Tony Holohan.

"The high mortality we are experiencing as a country at the moment is related to the surge of infection we saw several weeks ago, and the hospitalisations and admissions to intensive care units that followed as a direct result."

There have been 3,418 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland, which has a population of almost 5 million.

(Reporting by Graham Fahy; Editing by Alexandra Hudson)