The Department of Health has announced that a further 49 people who had been diagnosed with Covid-19 have died, bringing the total number of deaths to 769.

Ten deaths that had previously been reported are no longer classified as related to Covid-19.

Of the 769 deaths, 386 people died in a hospital setting, with 50 of those in ICU. The median age of those admitted to ICU is 60.

The number of additional cases of the virus diagnosed here is 631, bringing the total number of cases here to 16,671.

Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan said there were 302 clusters in community residential care settings, 179 of which were in nursing homes.

He said the total number of cases associated with community residential care settings was 2,604 with 1,944 cases in nursing homes.

In relation to deaths in these settings, a total of 412 people had died following a diagnosis of Covid-19, 348 of those deaths occurred in nursing homes.

Dr Holohan said that approximately 10% of people with the virus in these settings have been hospitalised.

The HSE's National Clinical Advisor and Group Lead for Older Persons, Dr Siobhán Kennelly, said far more people recover than die from Covid-19 in nursing homes.

Dr Máirín Ryan, Deputy CEO of HIQA and director Health Technology Assessment, said newer Covid-19 test kits have the potential for batch testing and shorter turnaround times for results.

She said this can alleviate pressure on laboratories.

Dr Holohan said the Department of Health was confident that the reproductive rate of the virus could be kept below one as long as restrictions and behaviours remained as they were.

He said there should be no slacking off by the public in anticipation of any possible relaxation of restrictions on 5 May.

If there is any let up, he said, we could see a significant increase in the numbers of admissions to intensive care and that needed to be prevented.

As of Monday, Dr Holohan said almost 40% of people admitted to intensive care units so far had been discharged. 

He said that of a total of 327 ICU admissions, 130 people were discharged; 147 people are still being treated in intensive care, and 50 people died in ICU. 

Dr Holohan said that 83% of people who were being treated for Covid-19 in ICU had an underlying illness. 

He also gave a breakdown of the ages of people who had died after a diagnosis of Covid-19:

70 years +: 667 deaths
60 to 69 years: 53 deaths
50 to 59 years - 29 deaths
40 - 49 years: 12 deaths
30 - 40 years: fewer than five deaths
20 - 30 years: fewer than five deaths
0 - 20 years: no deaths

Meanwhile, the death toll of people dying after contracting coronavirus in Northern Ireland has risen to 250.

Northern Ireland's Department of Health has said that eight deaths occurred in hospital yesterday and that a further 26 deaths that have been previously unreported have been added to official record.

In total 2,874 people in Northern Ireland have tested positive for the virus.

Additional reporting: Laura Hogan, Tommie Gorman