LATEST: Nightclubs reopen from Friday as highest number of new cases recorded since January 22
A further 2,399 more people have contracted the coronavirus, the Department of Health confirmed this evening.
And the number of patients now being treated in hospital with the virus now stands at 473, a drop of 11 since yesterday. Of these, 74 patients are being treated in ICU, an increase of one.
It is the highest daily total recorded since January 22.
The latest figures come after the Government earlier approved plans to reopen more parts of the economy including live venues and nightclubs.
From Friday, for indoor live music, drama, live entertainment and sporting events, members of the audience and spectators should be fully seated with standing permitted at seats.
However, the continued use of masks, vaccine certificates and physical distancing measures will remain in place until February.