Varadkar says a "short period" of lockdown restrictions may be needed in January or February
"A short period of enhanced restrictions may well be necessary in January or February, though we should try and avoid it being a prolonged one."
Leo Varadkar has said that a "short period" of lockdown restrictions may be needed in January or February, and that the Government should ease restrictions on 1 December.
Ireland is due to exit Level 5 on 1 December, though it is unclear in what capacity that will be just yet.
Speaking in the Dáil on Tuesday, Varadkar said that we should ease restrictions next week, but not to the extent that it results in us returning to Level 4 or 5 for a "prolonged period" in the new year.
He said: "A short, third period of enhanced restrictions may well be necessary in January or February, though we should try and avoid it being a prolonged one."
He also said our current strategy of suppression could be described as "delay and vaccinate", and that we're not too far away from seeing that succeed.
"When we vaccinate those most at risk, like nursing home residents and healthcare workers, we will change the calculus for future decision making.
"It will reduce the R number, case numbers and mortality rates."
Also speaking to the Dáil, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly said that we have conducted 1.8 million Covid tests in Ireland up to now.