There has now been a total of 26,712 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ireland, and the pandemic has claimed a total of 1,772 lives here.
Professor Philip Nolan, Chair of the NPHET Irish Epidemiological Modelling Advisory Group, said; "As outlined by the Acting Chief Medical Officer at the press conference last night, the 14-day incidence per 100,000 population in Kildare, Laois and Offaly is worryingly high".
The new rules include restricting people to their counties, asking them to work from home where possible and the closure of cinemas, museums, galleries and restaurants and pubs serving food.
But a local lockdown is a.
Some 98 news cases were reported on Friday, with the total number of deaths attributed to COVID-19 now totalling 1,772.
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It follows a spike in coronavirus cases in recent weeks.
However, retail shops can remain open with the wearing of face masks, and childcare and schools that are open can remain open.
The latest measure which came into on Friday midnight and will last for an initial period of two weeks, involves Kildare, Offaly and Laois counties, all located in the central southern part of Ireland, reports Xinhua news agency.
Speaking on Saturday, Dr Ronan Glynn noted that the amount of confirmed cases announced were not unexpected.
The rest of the country will remain in Phase 3.
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"While the majority of these cases can be accounted for by outbreaks, this volume of cases is significant and our main priority now is to ensure that these outbreaks do not lead to widespread community transmission in the region".
"We continue to see cases linked to the outbreaks in counties where additional public health measures have been introduced".
They're considering whether to tell the government to impose immediate lockdowns in Kildare, Offaly and Laois.
"NPHET believes that this package of measures today represents a proactive and proportionate response to the evolving situation".
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