There have been 866 new cases of coronavirus and six further Covid-related deaths reported to the Department of Health.

This brings the total number of cases here to 60,297. There has been a total of 1,902 Covid-19 related deaths in Ireland.

The number of people in ICU is 43, an increase of two from yesterday.

Figures this evening show there are now 330 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in hospitals.

Of today's cases, 428 were men and 438 were women and 63% were under the age of 45.

The median age of the cases is 35.

There were 242 cases reported in Dublin, 166 in Cork, 56 in Donegal, 54 in Galway, 44 in Meath and the remaining 304 cases are spread across another 20 counties.

In a statement, the Chief Medical Officer said: "It is vitally important that if you are experiencing symptoms of Covid-19 that you self-isolate and phone your GP for further advice."

Dr Tony Holohan said: "Self-isolate means stay in your room and avoid contact with other members of your household. Doing this will protect those you live with by interrupting the chain of transmission.

"I again appeal to everyone to behave as though you are a close contact. Stay at home, other than for essential reasons."

Meanwhile, the National Public Health Emergency Team held its weekly meeting today to review the latest Covid-19 trends.

It is one week since the Level 5 restrictions were introduced to suppress Covid-19 in Ireland.

Members of NPHET met to assess the current situation and compliance with the measures, which are due to remain in place for another five weeks.

Elsewhere, Northern Ireland recorded a further eight Covid-19 related deaths during the past 24 hours, taking the official Department of Health toll to 688.

An additional 822 cases there have been recorded from tests on 3,283 individuals.

There are 361 confirmed Covid-19 patients in hospital, with 44 in ICU, 39 of whom are on ventilators.

The seven-day infection rate per 100,000 for Northern Ireland is 316.

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New study highlights dangers of Covid-19 misinformation

New Irish research has highlighted the dangers of misinformation on Covid-19 which has been circulating online.

It looked at a number of false messages circulating in Cork and across Ireland in the early days of the pandemic.

It cites one example, circulated in WhatsApp, where a message incorrectly stated that "four healthy young people were in serious condition with coronavirus in Cork" following ingestion of ibuprofen.

The researchers found that false messages tend to contain common features, a claim that the source has inside information, an alarmist tone and vague details about the source of the information and emotive effect and that is intended to trigger panic in the reader and induce fear.

The study says that the misinformation has mainly centred around four key themes: food and beverages as "cures"; hygiene practices; medicines and the Government responses.

The research has been published in the British Medical Journal and was carried out by Dr Cathal O'Connor, dermatology specialist registrar and Dr Michelle Murphy, consultant dermatologist at the South Infirmary Victoria University Hospital in Cork.

Dr O'Connor said there was a need for doctors to confront fake news internationally.

Reporting Fergal Bowers and Fergal O'Brien