Ireland likely to be hit with "more Covid variants" over next few months
The Minister for Health has said that mutations of the Omicron variant could affect Ireland in the near future.
This weekend saw the majority of Covid-19 restrictions lift in Ireland as progress continues to be made in tackling the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, despite the recent optimism, the Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has warned the public that the pandemic is not over, and it's likely that we'll see more variants of the virus over the next few months.
On RTE’s This Week, Donnelly said that we could be seeing more "variants of concern" in the coming months.
"The infectious disease experts community that I’m speaking to, and the virologists, say, look, we could have more variants of concern," he said.
"We could have mutations of Omicron that may be more severe, so obviously we have to keep an eye on that."
Donnelly did say that with regards to the current situation and the impact of Omicron on Ireland, things are looking hopeful.
"But certainly this wave of Omicron, we look to be well through that, the numbers are right down," he added.
Donnelly also extended his thanks to Ireland's healthcare workers and to the Irish public for getting vaccinated.
"For me, this weekend is a time to give thanks, for me as Minister for Health, to give thanks to our extraordinary healthcare community right round the country," Donnelly said.
"But critically as well, to every person in this country who stepped up and got vaccinated and got boosted. The reason we are in this situation this weekend is because as a nation we acted together."
The Minister also spoke about the possibility of vaccines that offered longer term immunity.
"Encouragingly, I am talking to people within virology who are saying that there could be vaccines coming that could give longer term immunity, so say, a year, and as these technologies become more apparent we can start looking, for example, at annual vaccination regimens."
Feature image: Sam Boal / RollingNews.ie