The number is still climbing.
The Department of Health has announced that there are 204 new cases of coronavirus in Ireland, bringing the total to 1,329, while one patient, a male in the east of the country who had an underlying health condition, has died.
In Northern Ireland, the number of Covid-19 cases has doubled since Saturday to 172.
Speaking at a Department of Health briefing this evening, Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan said that, of the 14,692 tests carried out at the National Virus Research Lab in UCD, the majority (93%) have been negative.
Dublin has the highest number of cases at 535 (55% of all cases), followed by Cork with 123 cases (13%). 247 cases (26%) are associated with healthcare workers.
Analysis of public health contact tracing has shown that the average number of close contacts per confirmed case has decreased from 20+ to the region of 5 contacts. This shows that the public is following health advice and actively limiting the amount of people they engage with.
— Department of Health (@roinnslainte) March 24, 2020
Dr Holohan reiterated the advice to avoid public transport unless absolutely necessary, with transport companies expected to limit passenger numbers to ensure social distancing rules are observed.
Tighter measures on social distancing
This afternoon the Government introduced a series of strict new public health measures following a meeting of the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET).
At a briefing this afternoon, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar asked the public to work from home where possible and only leave the house to collect groceries and take limited exercise.
The Department of Health has rolled out a new public awareness campaign aimed at explaining what a 2m (6ft, 7″) distance looks like. For instance, 2m is the average arm span of an adult or the length of a double bed.
Social Distancing: How Far is 2 metres? This is the distance needed between people to help stop the spread of #COVID19 #coronavirus | @CMOIreland | @ronan_glynn | @SimonHarrisTD | @HSELive pic.twitter.com/XYnnrgm3Sr
— Department of Health (@roinnslainte) March 20, 2020
The National Public Health Emergency Team will meet again on Thursday, March 26th, to “review Ireland’s ongoing preparedness and response” to the Coronavirus outbreak.