Health officials have announced a further 3,887 COVID cases this evening.
This morning there were 493 COVID patients in hospital – down 25 on yesterday and 12 on this day last week.
There were 109 in intensive care, which is eight fewer than last week.
The five-day moving average is now 4272.
The Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan said testing suggests 14% of Ireland’s cases are now related to the Omicron variant – up from 11% yesterday.
“In line with the experience of many other countries, we can expect this proportion to rise rapidly over the coming days,” he said.
“The goal now is to limit the spread of COVID-19 through our tried and tested preventive measures. These measures can protect us and our families and will allow time for the booster vaccination programme to take effect.
“This means that, as we move closer to Christmas, we must try to reduce the number of people we meet, avoid crowds and work from home unless it is essential to attend in person.
“I encourage anyone eligible for a booster vaccination to take that opportunity. Boosters are proven to be effective in restoring protection against all variants of COVID-19.”
It comes as the three coalition Government leaders meet with Dr Holohan to discuss the impact of Omicron.
The meeting is billed as an informal briefing with restrictions not expected to be discussed until NPHET makes recommendations later this week.
This evening, the Green Party leader Eamon Ryan said he doesn’t believe schools will be asked to close.
“I don’t see our schools or colleges closing because, I think, one of the things we have seen from the lockdown is that actually that has an impact on our children’s health – and their wellbeing and their education,” he said.
“I would be strongly arguing that the wellbeing of our children is better managed by our schools staying open – and our colleges as well.”