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Covid-19: 337 new cases confirmed in Ireland

There are 89 people in hospital with the virus, including 34 in intensive care.

Image: Brian Lawless/PA Images

THE DEPARTMENT OF Health has confirmed an additional 337 cases of Covid-19 in Ireland.

Some 89 people are in hospital being treated for the virus, down from 98 yesterday. There are 34 patients in intensive care units.

Today’s figures come after the Government’s announcement of a major pandemic-recovery package: Cabinet agreed this morning a multi-billion package aimed at stimulating the economy and phasing out supports such as the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) and Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS).

Taoiseach Micheál Martin said that the approach to recovery would be “jobs-led”, focusing on retraining certain workers and creating new employment opportunities that would be carbon neutral.

The aim of the recovery package is to have 2.5 million people working in Ireland by 2024.

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar said the plan will prompt our economy “to take off like a rocket in the months ahead”.

“It’s about restoring our public finances to good health through employment, not austerity; by going for growth, not retrenchment; and aiming for a rapid recovery,” he said.

The PUP will be reduced by €50 from September and closed off to new applicants from July, as the country gradually reopens after the pandemic.

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The government has spent over €7.7 billion on the PUP to date.

The World Health Organisation also announced today that a new naming system is in place for Covid-19 variants.

Different strains of the disease, which were previously named with multiple numbers and letters, will now be identified using the Greek alphabet (alpha, beta, etc).

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