The Health Protection Surveillance Centre has confirmed that sadly a further 16 people with COVID-19 have died.
That compares with ten deaths in the previous 24 hour period.
There have now been a total 1,518 COVID-19 related deaths in Ireland.
As of 11.00 am today, Friday the HPSC has been notified of 129 new confirmed cases of COVID-19.
The total number of cases has now risen to 23,956.
Meanwhile, there has been widespread approval of the announcement by the Government that Phase One on the easing of Covid-19 restrictions will begin on Monday.
The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar stated that people should use face coverings when using busy public transport or in an enclosed indoor public area, such as retail, from Monday.
He clarified that the wearing of face coverings is advisory - and is not a legal requirement.
Dr. Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer, Department of Health, said: “Earlier today, Government announced Phase 1 of the COVID-19 Roadmap will commence from Monday 18th May.
“As we ease restrictions that were implemented in recent weeks, the core message remains the same, ‘stay at home’ where possible and follow public health behaviours to limit the spread; hand washing, respiratory etiquette and physical distancing.
“I urge everyone to remember how easily this virus can spread, how quickly we could lose the progress that the country has worked so hard to achieve.”
Dr. Ronan Glynn, Deputy Chief Medical Officer, added: “Over a very short time period we have witnessed a whole of society effort to stop this virus in its tracks. Across Government, our health, social care and emergency services, Gardaí and Defence Forces, businesses and the non-profit sector, media and general public at large, it has been heartening to witness such collective action.”
Dr Siobhan Ni Bhriain, Consultant Psychiatrist and HSE Integrated Care Lead, said: “These past weeks have been particularly difficult for those who have been cocooning from family, friends and society. Today, I hope new measures will bring some relief to this group and that they know we as a society are supporting them wherever possible, including by adopting safe behaviours in physical distancing, hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette.”
There have been a further 15 deaths as a result of coronavirus in Northern Ireland, bringing the official total to 469.
Meanwhile, the BBC has reported today that the number of people who have died because of Covid-19 in Northern Ireland is approximately 70% higher than the figure publicly announced every day.
By 1 May, 376 deaths were announced by the Department of Health.
However, the BBC reports that if you look back at death registrations filed by that date, the figure is higher: just under 500 death certificates mentioned Covid-19.
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