The Taoiseach has confirmed earlier closing times for the hospitality sector, as well as a range of new COVID-19 restrictions.
Micheál Martin says there's 'no doubt' Ireland would be in another full lockdown without the high rate of vaccination.
Cabinet agreed to a series of measures at a Cabinet meeting this morning, in response to rising COVID-19 case numbers and hospitalisations.
A new curfew on the hospitality sector is being brought in, alongside changes to rules around close contacts.
- Pubs, restaurants and nightclubs will have closing hours of midnight from Thursday
- People will be advised to work from home wherever possible from Friday
- An entire household will have to restrict movements for five days if there's a confirmed case in the home, pending completion of antigen tests
- A booster vaccine campaign for over 50s and those aged 16 to 59 with an underlying condition has been confirmed
- Vaccine certs won't be required for hairdressers and gyms as recommended by NPHET, but will now be mandatory for all cinemas and theatres
It comes after 4,407 new cases of the virus were confirmed today, while 614 patients with COVID-19 are being treated in Irish hospitals.
The Taoiseach said there's "no doubt" Ireland would be in a full-scale lockdown without the vaccine programme.
Taoiseach speech now live
Micheál Martin saying for every four detected cases there may be as many as six asymptomatic cases in the community
— Seán Defoe (@SeanDefoe) November 16, 2021
Micheál Martin said the range of measures agreed today represent an "appropriate response" to the current wave of infections.
He said that everyone should work from home unless it's "absolutely necessary" to attend in person.
Mr Martin said it's a "collective effort" that's now needed to keep the economy open and keep people safe.