Former HSE director calls for ease of Level 5 restrictions

Last minute shoppers on Henry Street in Dublin city centre. From midnight on Wednesday the whole of Ireland will be placed under Level 5 coronavirus restrictions for six weeks in a bid to combat the rise in cases of the virus.
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Digital Desk Staff

There are calls from the former head of the HSE to ease some Covid-19 Level 5 restrictions early.

The estimated national 14-day incidence rate now stands at 228 - a 25 percent drop on its peak on October 25th.

It comes as 322 new cases of the virus were confirmed by the Department of Health last night, while five more deaths were notified.

Tony O'Brien, former HSE Director General says the government should consider letting the likes of hairdressers reopen early, however it's important others remain closed until December:

"That wouldn't in my view apply to restaurants and bars and it would not suggest a relaxation in the requirement for us to stay apart and not be in each others homes."

He said these factors are an important contribution to why the numbers are coming down in Ireland overall.


There are currently 306 people in hospital with Covid-19 and a further 43 people in ICU with the virus.

Downward trend

Overall , Ireland has recorded 63,048 cases of the virus and 1,922 Covid-19 related deaths.

Of the cases notified yesterday, 96 were located in Dublin, 35 in Meath, 23 in Cork, 17 in Louth, 16 in Waterford and the remaining 135 cases are spread across 18 other counties.

Chief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said: “Due to the efforts of people across Ireland, we are seeing improvements with Covid-19.

"However, we must remember that maintaining this downward trend is now the most crucial thing.

"The value of our progress depends on continuing the safe behaviour that got us to this position. I urge everyone to keep it up, to ensure these initial trends continue.”

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