The Acting Chief Medical Officer and the Health Minister are briefing the Taoiseach around now, on whether three counties should be locked down to stop the spread of Covid-19.
Ronan Glynn last night refused to rule out local restrictions across Kildare, Offaly and Laois amid concern at the high number of confirmed cases in the three counties.
Any regional lockdown will have to be signed off by Ministers at a special Cabinet meeting this afternoon.
NPHET began meeting just after 11 O'Clock, with the developing situation in the midlands dominating their discussions.
They're considering whether to tell the government to impose immediate lockdowns in Kildare, Offaly and Laois.
The counties have had 226 Covid-19 cases in the past two weeks, mainly linked with meat processing plants and direct provision centres.
Already we know there will be at least 60 further cases from these counties confirmed this evening.
With the weekend looming, public health doctors are growing increasingly worried about asymptomatic cases spreading the virus and driving up community transmission.
Should lockdowns be recommended, Ministers are waiting by to attend an emergency Cabinet meeting.