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Dr Tony Holohan at the Department of Health briefing last night. Sasko Lazarov/
tony holohan

Daily Department of Health briefings to drop to two days a week as Ireland enters Phase Two

The Department of Health has held daily press briefings since the start of the crisis.

THE DEPARTMENT OF Health press briefings – which have become daily viewing for many as Ireland deals with the Covid-19 crisis – will shift to two days a week as the country enters Phase Two. 

The briefings will move from five days a week to two days – on Monday and Thursday’s. 

Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan confirmed the change at last night’s briefing, which as ever was attended by a several socially distanced journalists.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Dr Ronan Glynn, wrote on Twitter yesterday evening that “we’re not there yet but going in the right direction”. 

“Thanks to our health & public services for keeping us safe, our journalists & media organisations for keeping us informed and to everyone who has held firm & protected themselves and others over the past 3 months,” Glynn said. 

The daily briefings, which became a regular and widely watched occurrence since the start of March, saw a range of health officials – nearly always including Holohan and Glynn – gather in front of journalists to announce the latest data from the pandemic, including the number of people who have died and the latest number of positive cases. 

1956 Covid 19 HSE Chief Clinical Officer, Dr Colm Henry, at the daily briefing in the Department of Health. Sasko Lazarov / Sasko Lazarov / /

Journalists at the briefings were able to ask officials questions on how National Public Health Emergency Team and the government were handling the crisis. 

The daily appearance of Holohan raised him from something of an unknown official to one of the most recognisable figures in the country, with his face even appearing on a mural on the wall of a Dublin pub. 

The drop to two briefings a week signals that the country is making progress against the virus. Last night, health officials confirmed a further seven patients diagnosed with Covid-19 have died and there are 28 new cases of the disease in Ireland. 

There have now been a total 1,670 Covid-19 related deaths in Ireland and 25,163 confirmed cases. 

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