Plan for lifting of lockdown due to be approved tomorrow

The plan for lifting Ireland's lockdown restrictions is to be completed and approved by cabinet tomorrow.
Plan for lifting of lockdown due to be approved tomorrow

The plan for lifting Ireland's lockdown restrictions is to be completed and approved by cabinet tomorrow.

The new guidelines will depend on five specific areas, and will be announced every two to four weeks.

It is expected the Taoiseach will address the nation on how the gradual end to lockdown will take shape tomorrow night, as

Read More:

Speaking in the Dáil on Thursday, Leo Varadkar acknowledged that the public are beginning to become fatigued with restrictions, and need some sign that life will return to normal.

"People want to know when things are going to go back to the new normal, and I can assure them that a plan is being developed to ease the lockdown, a roadmap to reopen Ireland, a roadmap to what will be a new normal," he said.

"Unfortunately for those who'd like immediate return to pre-Covid world, the lifting of the current restrictions will be slow and gradual and will be done in a stepwise tiered manner.

"It will require continuous efforts to suppress and control the virus.

"Therefore the lifting of restrictions will not necessarily mirror the manner in which they were implemented, for public health and safety."

Mr Varadkar said the five criteria are: The progress of the disease; Healthcare capacity and resilience; Testing and contact tracing capacity; The ability to shield and care for at risk groups; and the risk of secondary morbidity and mortality, due to the restrictions themselves.

"As we manage the gradual lifting, restrictions will prioritise public health advice and give careful consideration on how best to mitigate and manage the economic and other health and social impacts," he said.

He added that changes to the restrictions will be made every two to four weeks, as a period of time between changes will be needed to accurately assess their impact.

"We will intervene earlier though, if things appear to be going off track," he added.

Restrictions may have to be reintroduced if it looks like the virus is going to surge back.

Mr Varadkar, who lauded Ireland's testing capacity, with over 150,000 tests carried out, making the state sixth out of the 27 EU countries on a per capita basis, heard during the Dáil session by Green Party leader Eamon Ryan, that Mr Ryan's son had been tested 35 days ago and had yet to receive his results, and although he is healthy, Mr Ryan said many families around the country were going through the same experience.

The government was also quizzed on a perceived lack of transparency on decision making and governance from a number of TDs, most notably Labour leader Alan Kelly.

Mr Kelly noted that full minutes from NPHET briefings have not been kept, as well as letters from the Chief Executive and Chairperson of the Health Service Executive (HSE) to the Minister for Health and his Department regarding concerns around governance have still not been published.

"There must also be rebalancing in democratic accountability; it is fantastic that so many members of NPHET appear in the media but the odd time they need to appear before some formation of these Houses," he said.

"People are concerned about this."

More in this section

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.