There have been 1,620 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland and 12 additional related deaths.
This gives a total of 2,237 COVID-19 related deaths and 91,779 confirmed cases in Ireland.
This includes the denotification of one death, and the re-classification of two probable cases to 'confirmed'.
Of the cases notified today:
- 794 are men / 819 are women
- 65% are under 45 years of age
- The median age is 34 years old
Some 498 cases are in Dublin, 203 in Limerick, 89 in Galway, 73 in Cork and 67 in Mayo.
The remaining 690 cases are spread across all other counties.
As of 2.00pm, 490 COVID-19 patients are hospitalised - of which 42 are in ICU.
There have been 58 additional hospitalisations in the past 24 hours.
Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer said: "We are once again in the mitigation stage of this pandemic.
"The alarming escalation in the incidence of the virus in the general population gives great cause for concern.
"This disease is now widespread in our communities and as a result we are asking everyone to behave as if they are a close contact."
'No longer in containment phase'
He also explained changes to the current testing system
"To support the testing system through this surge, we are no longer advising close contacts of confirmed cases to get tested.
"Testing and tracing is an exercise in containment and we are no longer in a containment phase.
"However, it is imperative that if you are a close contact of a confirmed case you restrict your movements and contact your GP immediately if you develop symptoms."
He added: "The average number of contacts per case has risen from 2.5 in November to an average in recent days of 6.3.
"This is very far from where we need to be and I am appealing to everyone at every age to adhere to the mandated restrictions that the Government has introduced: stay at home, except for essential reasons, other than for exercise up to 5km."