• Sat. Oct 29th, 2022

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has said the latest figures for coronvirus cases has been artificially low due to fewer tests being carried out on Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day.

Dec 28, 2020

Tánaiste Leo Varadkar has said the latest figures for coronvirus cases has been artificially low due to fewer tests being carried out on Christmas Day and St Stephen’s Day.
Addressing concerns that the latest restrictions will not bring the reproduction rate (R-rate) under one, the Tanaiste said “honestly we will not know until the restrictions come in”.
He added: “No matter what is done, we would expect to see cases rise until the New Year.”
The roll out of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine is set to begin tomorrow.
Asked on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland if the start of the Covid-19 vaccination roll out marks the beginning of the end of the pandemic, Mr Varadkar said “I believe it does”.
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He said the roll out of the vaccine, which begins tomorrow in acute hospital settings in Cork, Galway and Dublin will be slow at first but will be extended over the course of the next few months.
He said the supply of the vaccine is limited with about 40,000 doses a week of the Pfizer BioNTech vaccine coming in throughout January allowing 3% of the population to be inoculated.
Mr Varadkar said cases may “not have fallen enough” by the time restrictions are reviewed on 12 January.
He added that “there is a case for saying to the Irish people perhaps we should keep those restrictions in place” for months until vulnerable people are vaccinated.