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Killer Covid-19 Cases Reach 7,327 On Irish Mainland In Past 24 Hours.

The Department of Health has confirmed 5,419 new cases of Covid-19 within the past 24 hours here in the Irish Republic.

There remain 528 people in hospital who have tested positive for the virus, down 17 on yesterday’s figures and of these 110 remain in ICU’s, down seven on yesterday.

While the new variant Omicron has now been detected in some 38 countries including Ireland, to date there are no reported deaths so far according to the World Health Organisation,(WHO).

The Health Amendment Bill, which includes a return of Mandatory Hotel Quarantine has passed all stages in the Dáil tonight.

NPHET has advised the Government that cultural, entertainment, community and sporting events should operate at 50% capacity over the coming weeks, while indoor hospitality should be brought back to where it stood before October 22nd last; nightclubs will close, with restrictions remaining in place until January 9th at least. Covid passes will be required for gyms, leisure centres, hotel bars and restaurants.
Accepting NPHET’s recommendations Mr Martin has stated that he understood the frustration felt by people with the reintroduction of these restrictions.
With the level of disease in the community still a concern, a limit is expected to be recommended on household gatherings. However, An Taoiseach Mr Micheál Martin has stated that NPHET acknowledge that there was a need for flexibility on household visits.

The Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) is to be reinstated for all those who lose jobs as a result of restrictions announced tonight.

Elsewhere
Belgium has tightened its coronavirus restrictions for the third consecutive week today to fight one of Europe’s worst spikes of Covid-19 cases.
With cases among children rising, mask mandates will apply to children from age six. Primary schools will shut for Christmas holidays a week earlier and secondary schools will shift to a hybrid system, with half of classes operating from home.

A further 1,908 new cases of coronavirus have been reported in Northern Ireland today down from the 2,272 cases reported yesterday.

There remain 326 patients with Covid-19 in northern hospitals, up 2 on yesterday, with 30 patients with Covid-19 remaining in hospital intensive care units.
Sadly 4 Covid-19-related deaths have also been reported in Northern Ireland today.

Please do continue to listen to science and do keep yourself and your family safe by regularly washing your hands; wearing a mask when appropriate, and cut down on unnecessary social contacts.

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