The acting Chief Medical Officer has said that people can turn the tide of rising Covid-19 cases numbers, after 326 new cases of coronavirus were notified to the Department of Health in the past 24 hours.

The figure includes 152 cases in Dublin and 22 in Donegal.

No further deaths were reported and the death toll here from Covid-19 remains at 1,797 with 34,315 confirmed cases.

This includes the denotification of six previously confirmed cases.

Dr Ronan Glynn, Acting Chief Medical Officer, said: "Today I am asking people everywhere but particularly in Donegal and Dublin to pay special attention to the public health advice.

"I ask every individual to take personal responsibility to prioritise who you need to see, limit the size of your social network and reduce your social contacts over the coming days and weeks.

"Because while there is every chance that other areas will have to move to Level 3, there is nothing inevitable about it. We have seen previously how people working together can turn the tide on this virus and bring increasing trajectories back under control."

Dr Glynn added: "Know how valuable your individual actions are. Your choices and your actions are part of how we will succeed." 

In a video posted to Twitter this evening, he said Donegal now has the highest incidence rate in the country.

Its 7 day incidence rate is 108 per 100,000 population which he said is more than double that of any other county outside of Dublin.

The latest Covid-19 cases include 162 men and 152 women. Over two thirds (69%) are under 45 years of age.

One third (33%) are confirmed to be associated with outbreaks or are close contacts of a confirmed case while 49 cases have been identified as community transmission.

As well as 152 cases in Dublin and 22 in Donegal, there were 32 new cases reported in Cork, 21 in Galway, 15 in Meath and 11 in Kildare.

Nine cases came from Kerry, eight were in Louth, eight more in Westmeath, six in Limerick, six in Mayo, six in Tipperary and five in Wexford, with the remaining 25 cases spread across eight counties.

Earlier, President Michael D Higgins addressed a virtual UN meeting on universal access to Covid-19 healthcare from Áras An Uachtaráin.

"This pandemic has demonstrated, with often tragic consequences, that new ideas are now required. Ideas based on equity of access, suffiency, sustainability," he said.

"It has demonstrated an unequivocal need for a new eco-social-political economy, of having universal basic services that will protect us in the future, of enabling people to achieve sufficiency in what they need.

"As President of Ireland I am pleased that Ireland is among 156 countries that have now joined a programme backed by the World Health Organization that aims to ensure the equitable distribution of any future vaccine against Covid-19."

Also today, the Department of Health in Northern Ireland announced a record number of confirmed cases of Covid-19.

There are an additional 273 cases reported in the past 24 hours, taking the total number of cases to 10,223.

Meanwhile, it has been revealed that more young people are being hospitalised due to Covid-19

Speaking on RTÉ's Today with Claire Byrne, Health Service Executive Chief Executive Paul Reid said they are seeing a rise in new virus cases among people aged over 65 alongside an increase in hospitalisations of young people.

He said the testing and contact tracing system in Donegal has been overwhelmed by the volume of cases, which need to be controlled now.

Mr Reid said the amount of work carried out in the last six months in response to the coronavirus along with the Winter Plan will see a shifting of care and pressure away from hospital services, to treating the elderly at home and giving GPs diagnostics in the community.

He also revealed that 1.4 million adult flu vaccines and 600,000 children's flu vaccines will be available to administer this winter.

Also today, college students learnt that all third level and higher education institutions will deliver the vast majority of learning online for the next two weeks.