More than 1,000 cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed on the island of Ireland on Sunday.
A further 562 cases have been confirmed in the Republic, while an additional 533 cases have been reported in Northern Ireland.
No further deaths related to the disease were reported in the North, while daily data on deaths remains unavailable in the Republic due to a cyberattack on the health service.
As of midnight, Saturday 3rd July, we are reporting 562* confirmed cases of #COVID19.
14 in ICU. 48 in hospital.
*Daily case numbers may change due to future data review, validation and update.
— Department of Health (@roinnslainte) July 4, 2021
There are 48 people currently hospitalised in the Republic, up six from Saturday, with 14 people in intensive care.
The Delta variant now accounts for 75 per cent of Covid-19 cases in Northern Ireland, and is suspected to account for around 70 per cent of new cases in the Republic.
On Saturday, just over 900 new cases were confirmed on the island, with 448 cases in the Republic and 460 cases in Northern Ireland.
Vaccine and variant race
It comes as Taoiseach Micheál Martin has said the Irish public have the power to weaken the coming Delta variant coronavirus wave, in the race between vaccines and the variant.
A refocus on personal behaviour and responsibility can allow vaccines to rollout, reducing the impact of the variant and protecting progress already made, he said on Saturday.
In response to the variant threat, the Government has taken steps to accelerate the vaccination programme, with people aged 18 to 34 now able to “opt in” for AstraZeneca or Johnson & Johnson jabs and be vaccinated up to two months earlier than anticipated.
Pharmacists have received 10 calls for every single Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine that is available from people aged 18 to 34, according to the Irish Pharmacy Union.
One public health expert, DCU Professor of Health Systems Anthony Staines, has said that children must be vaccinated to prevent major outbreaks of the Delta variant.
However, the head of the HSE has said there is currently no plan to prioritise the vaccination of teenagers ahead of the return of schools in September.