The Taoiseach has announced that County Donegal will move to Level 3 of the Government's framework for restrictive measures from midnight on Friday night, for three weeks up to 16 October.
WATCH: Taoiseach Micheál Martin and acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn announce further restrictions to be imposed on Donegal for three weeks from midnight tonight | Read more: https://t.co/69Jsle57WD https://t.co/pOd7arjRlf— RTÉ News (@rtenews) September 24, 2020
The move was one that was expected to take place with a surge in Covid-19 cases taking place in the county.
There are now a total of 33,994 Covid-19 here and there have been 1,797 deaths related to the virus.
Of today's cases, 167 are in Dublin, 42 cases are in Donegal, 34 in Cork, Monaghan accounts for 13 cases, 12 cases were reported in Kildare, 8 in Cavan, 6 in Limerick, 6 in Meath, 6 in Roscommon and 5 in Wicklow.
The remaining 25 cases are spread across 11 counties.
The 14-day incidence of the disease in County Donegal rose again today and is now at 122.5 confirmed cases per 100,000 people.
This is up from 106.2 yesterday, Wednesday, the sharpest jump recorded by any county in the country.
Two and a half weeks ago the 14-day incidence rate for Donegal was below 20, meaning there has been a six-fold increase in the number of active or open infections in 16 days.
Agriculture Minister Charlie McConalogue
The Agriculture Minister and Fianna Fáil TD for Donegal, Charlie McConalogue, has said putting his county on Level 3 Covid-19 restrictions was "a very difficult but necessary decision" by Cabinet.
The Minister said he understood this would be "difficult for people across Donegal" but added: "Our people's health has to come first."
Deputy McConalogue told RTÉ News: "I would ask everyone to do their best to follow guidelines, restrict contacts in the time ahead to get the numbers down, and... return to phase 2."
Ag Minister + @fiannafailparty TD for #Donegal @McConalogue says putting his county on Level 3 #Covid19 restrictions was "a very difficult but necessary decision". It will be "difficult for people across Donegal" but added: "our people's health has to come first." @rtenews— Paul Cunningham (@RTENewsPaulC) September 24, 2020
The Taoiseach has said the next ten days are critical in the battle against Covid-19.
Micheál Martin said there were concerns about large urban areas including Waterford, Cork, Limerick and Galway and some other areas.
His comments come as the Government agrees to impose further Covid-19 restrictions on Donegal.
Deputy Joe McHugh
The Fine Gael TD for Donegal, Joe McHugh, has said it is "disappointing" that the level of Covid-19 infections in the county is "out of hand" and the Cabinet has given it a Level 3 designation.
However, he said that if NPHET believes the figures are too high, then "we have to be concerned" for the vulnerable people.
He said the people of Donegal now have to "roll up their sleeves" and get the county back to a Level 2 status.
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