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Tuesday 5 December 2023 Dublin: 6°C
Leah Farrell People in Dublin city centre last weekend.

Government will 'act on' any NPHET recommendations for Dublin before weekend, Helen McEntee says

Dublin has seen a considerable increase in Covid-19 cases in recent weeks.

THE COVID-19 Cabinet sub-committee will meet tomorrow to discuss recommendations from NPHET which will likely involve harsher restrictions in place for Dublin.

Justice Minister Helen McEntee said the government will act before the weekend on any further measures recommended today by the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET).

Speaking on RTÉ radio’s Morning Ireland, McEntee said it was “made very clear” over last weekend that Covid-19 figures and the incidence rate were rising in Dublin. 

“If there is a requirement to go even further for the county of Dublin, then we will act on that and we will do that,” she said. 

NPHET will meet this morning to discuss the ongoing Covid-19 situation with a particular focus on Dublin. 

It’s anticipated that the county could move to Level 3 of the Government’s five-level plan for ‘Living with Covid’ following NPHET’s recommendations as cases continue to rise. 

NPHET’s advice will then be considered by the Covid-19 Cabinet sub-committee tomorrow with an announcement due later that day. 

The decision-making structure for NPHET recommendations to government was recently altered. 

A Covid-19 committee of civil servants will first consider NPHET advice and issue guidance to the Cabinet Covid-19 sub-committee. 

This will be followed by recommendations sent to Cabinet for consideration.

McEntee said the extra civil servant committee will ensure any recommendations from NPHET can be worked out fully before political decisions are made. 

She said a decision on any stricter measures in Dublin will be reached and announced ahead of the weekend after the Cabinet sub-committee meets tomorrow.  

Health officials yesterday warned that deaths and hospitalisations from Covid-19 will see an “exponential growth” if the virus continues spreading at its current rate. 

It comes after NPHET confirmed a further 254 cases of coronavirus in Ireland, 136 of which were in Dublin. 

Three new deaths were also reported. 

Dublin has seen a considerable increase in the number of people infected with Covid-19 in recent weeks.

“I am more concerned than I have been at any point since late April,” said Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of NPHET’s Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group. 

“This disease is spreading rapidly,” he said. 

Ireland’s Reproductive Rate is currently between 1.3 and 1.7, Nolan said yesterday. 

- With reporting by Cónal Thomas

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