More restrictions are inevitable.
NPHET has proposed that further restrictions be reintroduced with regard to both the hospitality sector and household mixing.
In a letter sent to Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly last night, NPHET recommended that hospitality be restricted once again to six people per table only, with only table-service permitted. It has been advised that nightclubs should close entirely.
On the matter of household visits, it has been put forward that houses should only mix with three other households over the Christmas period. Cabinet will discuss the proposals today.
Measures regarding restrictions travelling to Ireland have been pushed back by 24 hours, however. The government had stated an intention to make PCR testing or antigen testing mandatory for those coming in to Ireland — a PCR test requirement 72 hours before arrival or an antigen test 48 hours before arrival.
While these restrictions were supposed to be introduced today, they have now been pushed back to Sunday. This delay is purportedly to give travellers more time to prepare for the measure.
4,163 new cases of Covid were confirmed yesterday. There are currently 545 people in hospital with the virus, 117 of which are in intensive care.