Restrictions likely for Dublin as fears grow Covid infections heading out of control

Public health experts are today expected to recommend new restrictions for Dublin to limit the spread of coronavirus, as fears grow that infections are heading out of control.

Last night, public health experts expressed a high degree of alarm at the current rate of infection, with one saying he was “more concerned than at any point in time since late April”.

The National Public Health Expert Team (NPHET) will meet today to decide its advice to Government, which is likely to be conveyed this evening.

Ministers and senior officials expect that a significant tightening of restrictions in the capital will be recommended, with Dublin likely to move at midnight tomorrow from Level Two to Level Three on the Government’s five-level structure for managing the pandemic that was unveiled on Tuesday.

It is understood the Government’s willingness to adopt new restrictions has been signalled to the public health experts.

Continuing concerns

The Cabinet subcommittee on Covid-19 – chaired by Taoiseach Micheál Martin – is scheduled to meet tomorrow morning, after which any new restrictions will be put to a meeting of the full Cabinet, most likely conducted remotely, for approval.

While there are continuing concerns in Government at the economic impact of further restrictions, it is understood the three party leaders in the Coalition are convinced of the need to take measures to control the spread of the virus in Dublin, where infections have grown rapidly in recent days.