Further measures on international travel restrictions expected tomorrow

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By Juno McEnroe
Political Correspondent

The government is to update measures on travel restrictions tomorrow in the ongoing effort to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

These are expected to include further ways to protect the country from visitors arriving who may be infected.

Speaking in the Dáil this afternoon, Minister for Health Simon Harris outlined what areas will be affected.

This comes after a promise by government last week that people arriving in Ireland will be obliged by law to declare where they will self-isolate.

Mr Harris told the Dáil he would update Cabinet tomorrow: “As you are aware, we ask every person that arrives through airports or ports – regardless of nationality – to fill out a passenger location form.

"Each person is asked to self-isolate for two weeks and provide the State with an address where they will self-isolate.

This is the land of Cead Mile Fáilte. We want to be able to share our island with people from across the world, but now is not the time.

He also addressed the recent outbreaks of Covid-19 in meat factories and said health authorities had advised that up to 60% of employees with the virus had now returned to work.

This comes after the latest HSE figures show some 828 cases have been diagnosed at plants.

Health Minister Simon Harris told the Dáil he would update Cabinet tomorrow
Health Minister Simon Harris told the Dáil he would update Cabinet tomorrow

But Mr Harris said: “Yesterday I spoke with the Chairperson of the HSE’s National Outbreak Control Team, Dr Mai Mannix.

“Preliminary estimates from the National Outbreak Control Team indicate that so far between 55% to 60% of employees in meat factories who have been diagnosed with Covid-19 have now recovered and returned to work.

“The National Public Health Emergency Team will consider the issue of meat factories further at its meeting tomorrow and I will await any advice or recommendations from them.”

A Covid-19 nursing home expert is also being set up, added Mr Harris.

This will include a public health expert, a geriatrician, a senior nurse and a public interest representative.