A flight carrying almost €30m in personal protective equipment for healthcare workers has landed at Dublin Airport this afternoon.
The 50-hour round trip to Beijing, undertaken by Aer Lingus, arrived back just before 3pm with masks, gowns and gloves among the items on board.
It is the first of a number of flights delivering over €200m worth of PPE to the country.
— Sands (@oh_sandie_) March 29, 2020
Speaking at an HSE COVID-19 media briefing at Citywest Hotel in Dublin today, Paul Reid, the CEO of the HSE, said the normal annual cost of this equipment is €15m, but the total order placed with China now stands at almost €210m.
He added that the most pressing issue facing the HSE this week had been the procurement of a "very significant delivery" of personal protective equipment for health workers.
It comes as 14 more people diagnosed with COVID-19 in the Republic have died, the Department of Health has confirmed yesterday.
It brings the total number of coronavirus related deaths in the country to 36.
There have been 294 new confirmed cases of coronavirus in Ireland, bringing the total number of confirmed cases here to 2,415.
This article was updated at 3.10pm.