LATEST: 29 new cases of virus confirmed in Kilkenny, most pandemic payment recipients to get Christmas bonus
A further three people have died after contracting the coronavirus as 335 new cases of Covid-19 were confirmed this evening.
The overall death toll as a result of the virus now stands at 2,036. There are now 71,494 confirmed cases of Covid-19 across the country, according to the latest daily briefing from the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET).
The breakdown of the latest cases is as follows: 119 in Dublin, 29 in Kilkenny, 23 in Limerick, 20 in Donegal, 19 in Tipperary, 19 in Cork, with the remaining 106 spread across 19 other counties.
The latest cases were confirmed as Social Protection Minister Heather Humphreys confirmed that most Pandemic Unemployment Payment recipients will receive a Christmas bonus, even if they return to work when public health restrictions are eased next week.
More than 1.6 million people currently receiving State benefits are set to receive a Christmas bonus payable in the week beginning December 7, at a cost of aorund €390 million to the Exchequer.
This includes more than 311,000 Pandemic Unemployment Payment recipients who will qualify for the bonus at a cost of around €93m.
To be eligible, claimants must have received the payment for at least 17 weeks, although not necessarily on a continuous basis, since the scheme was launched last March, and be claiming the benefit for at least part of the week commencing tomorrow, Friday, November 27.