December 5, 2023

LATEST: 138 more cases of virus, new infections recorded in Kilkenny, Minister says all pubs to reopen this month

There has been no further coronavirus related deaths but 138 more cases of Covid-19 were confirmed this evening.

The overall death toll as a result of the virus remains at 1,777. There are now 29,672 confirmed cases of Covid-19 across the country.

Kilkenny is among the counties to record new infections, according to the latest daily briefing from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET).

The breakdown of the cases is as follows: 68 in Dublin, 13 in Limerick, 9 in Galway, 9 in Kildare, 5 in Cork, 5 in Wexford, 5 in Wicklow, with the remaining 24 cases in Carlow, Clare, Donegal, Kilkenny, Laois, Leitrim, Longford, Mayo, Meath, Offaly, Roscommon, Tipperary, Waterford, and Westmeath.

The latest cases were confirmed as draft Government guidelines for the reopening of all pubs were circulated to vintners’ groups this weekend.

Under the guidelines, a strict table service policy will be in place and counter service will be be banned.

The guidelines are broadly the same as those that have been brought in for pubs where food is being served. These include keeping customer records for contact tracing purposes and time slots which are limited to 1 hour and 45 minutes where physical distancing of 1 metre can be maintained.

However time slots of 105 minutes are not a requirement where physical distancing of 2 metres can be “strictly maintained”. Physical distancing is required between people from different households, but not between those from the same household.

Minister for State Thomas Byrne earlier said all pubs could reopen “within the next few weeks”. He told RTÉ the Government is determined to reopen pubs and that he wanted to see that happen “within the month of September.”

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