The acting chief medical officer, Dr Ronan Glynn, has warned that it will be next week before we see if the lockdown measures introduced last weekend in Kildare, Laois and Offaly, have managed to help suppress COVID-19 in these areas.
He made his comments after 35 new cases of the virus were notified on Tuesday - the lowest number of new cases reported in several days. Just last Saturday, 174 new cases were reported.
"The number of confirmed cases notified to us daily is likely to rise and fall this week. It is important to look at the wider trends we see in this disease in Ireland for context, and not simply one day's figures in isolation.
"It will be next week before we see if measures introduced last weekend in Kildare, Laois and Offaly have had the desired effect in suppressing COVID-19 in these areas and minimising community transmission," Dr Glynn said.
Of the 35 cases confirmed on Tuesday, 71% had occurred in people under the age of 45. Five cases were identified as community transmission, while 24 were associated with outbreaks or were close contacts of a confirmed case.
Six of the cases occurred in Carlow, five in Clare and the remaining 24 were spread out over 10 other counties, including Dublin, Meath, Kildare, Laois and Donegal.
"We must remember that our focus as a society is on three national priorities - protecting public health and the most vulnerable, the resumption of non-COVID health services and the reopening of our schools.
"Every time you choose to avoid a crowd, keep two metres distance, wash your hands, wear a face covering and use the COVID Tracker app, you are making a vital contribution to this shared national effort," Dr Glynn insisted.
The number of cases of COVID as of Tuesday was 26,801. One more death was also reported on Tuesday, bringing the total number of deaths to 1,773.
Meanwhile, over 30,000 tests have been completed in the last seven days, of which 1.7% have been positive.
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