Taoiseach Says Government Isn’t Contemplating Reimposing Past COVID Restrictions

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Taoiseach Micheal Martin has said the government is not contemplating the re-imposition of earlier COVID restrictions.

Martin cited the high vaccination rates as putting the country in a significantly better position than earlier in the pandemic.

Though he insisted no previous restrictions would return, Martin could offer no guarantee that the remaining restrictions would be lifted as planned next weekend.

Yesterday saw 2,180 new COVID cases, reported, the highest figure since January. 406 patients were in hospital with COVID, with 71 in the ICU.

"We do not want to go back, and we are not contemplating going backwards," Martin told the Sunday Independent. "The only issue facing us now is going forward and that is a decision we will make on the advice we receive from Nphet (National Public Health Emergency Team)."

Nphet are set to meet on Monday to decide any recommendations to make to government.

The National Immunisation Advisory Committee (Niac) will also meet to discuss expanding the vaccine booster programme.

Martin has expressed a preference for issuing booster shots to those outside the current over-80 and suppressed immunity groups.

"Right now we are only administering the booster to over-80s and those who are auto-immune-suppressed," he said. "But I would like to see that expanded. And to healthcare workers too."


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