Republic of Ireland news

Another full lockdown highly unlikely in Republic, says WHO envoy

It's unlikely that the Republic will have to re-enter lockdown, a World Health Organisation envoy said
Aine McMahon, Press Association

It is highly unlikely the Republic will need to enter a total lockdown again, the World Health Organisation has said.

Phase two of the Republic's reopening plan began on Monday after the process was sped up by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on Friday, and there are now only four phases involved.

Dr David Nabarro, the World Health Organisation's (WHO) Covid-19 special envoy, told an Oireachtas committee he would be "surprised" if Ireland needs another phase of full lockdown.

READ MORE: Republic must prepare for imported coronavirus cases as it cannot close itself off, Taoiseach says

He said: "I think there will be local areas where clusters would emerge and for a short period of time, movement restrictions would have to be imposed.

"I think the pattern for the future will be picking up outbreaks quickly due to a higher level of organisation.

"I personally believe a total lockdown is highly unlikely."

Gardai at a checkpoint on the M1 between Belfast and Dublin during phase one of coronavirus lockdown

It came after another five Covid-19 deaths were reported yesterday, along with 19 new confirmed cases.

There have now been a total 1,695 Covid-19 related deaths in the Republic and 25,231 cases.

There is currently a total of 102 confirmed cases in hospital, with 29 of these patients in ICU.

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Republic of Ireland news