Health officials have announced a further 5,962 PCR-confirmed COVID cases this afternoon.
Meanwhile, 8,587 people registered positive antigen test results on the HSE website yesterday.
This morning, there were 1,605 patients with COVID in Irish hospitals – 19 fewer than yesterday but 267 more than this day last week.
There were 50 in intensive care, which is four fewer than yesterday and 11 fewer than last week.
Since PCR testing was restricted for the under-40s in mid-January, the National Public health Emergency Team (NPHET) has reported positive antigen test results uploaded to the HSE portal alongside PCR-confirmed results.
When both are included, the five-day moving average is now 14,795.
This morning, the HSE chief Clinical Officer Dr Colm Henry said around half of the patients with COVID in hospital were admitted for other reasons.
Of the patients that were admitted because of COVID, around half have not had their vaccine booster.
He said Ireland’s hospitals are “experiencing a level of disruption they have never seen before”.
Meanwhile, infectious diseases consultant Dr Eoghan de Barra said one of two things must happen to ease the burden on hospitals.
“Either we need to reduce the amount of virus circulating, which means some level of restrictions or we need to change how we manage patients who are positive and staff who are positive in terms of the duration of isolation,” he said.
“We did this before in January, but we have to find the balancing point of the staffing and the resources to manage this surge in cases or we have to cut off the growth in cases.”