The Department of Health has reported a further 1,179 confirmed cases of Covid-19.

It said there are 91 people in hospital, while there are 22 people in ICU, no change from yesterday.

Earlier, Health Service Executive CEO Paul Reid said the country is in for a "bumpy journey" for the next few weeks due to the Delta variant.

Yesterday, the Department of Health reported 1,377 new cases of the virus, which is the highest number of cases in more than five months.

There were 78 patients with Covid-19 in hospital, with 22 of these in intensive care units.

In a post on Twitter, Mr Reid said community positivity from testing reduced yesterday from 8.4% to 6.7%.

He said almost 64% of the adult population is fully vaccinated against Covid-19, with 77% having received one dose of a vaccine.

"A white knuckle ride of vaccines versus Delta, but let's get there", he said.

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Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn has said that 2,550 confirmed cases of Covid-19 have been reported in the past two days.

He urged people who are not vaccinated to be be careful about indoor settings and to not meet up with other people indoors if it can be avoided.

He said that anyone with any symptoms of a cold or flu - such as a headache, runny nose, blocked sinuses, sore throat - should to get a Covid-19 test.

In Northern Ireland, 537 new cases of Covid-19 have been reported by the Department of Health in the past 24 hours. One further coronavirus related death has also been reported.

Rise in cases 'not unexpected'

The President of the Irish Medical Organisation has said that while doctors do not want increasing rates of Covid-19 in the community, it is "not unexpected" because of the opening up of society.

Speaking on RTÉ's This Week, Dr Ina Kelly said she hopes that if people get mild symptoms it would not have an effect on the health service, but they would like "every case to be prevented if possible".

She said that even with vaccination there may be some transmission, and people could still experience Long Covid even if they are not hospitalised.

"We still haven't really experienced what it's like in a partially vaccinated population with having an exponential rise in cases", she said.

"So it's a fragile situation at the moment, and I think we can all do a lot still to try and minimise risk to ourselves, to our families and to the population and the health service."

Dr Kelly said one issue they have noticed is that symptomatic people are going to work because their symptoms are mild and they assume "that it's nothing".

She said it is important for people to remember that even with very mild symptoms they should isolate and get a Covid test.

She said everything that is done to open up society will "add a little bit more risk" and each person can make their own decisions about what risks they are and are not prepared to take.

Trying to address hospital waiting lists is going to put pressure on beds, Dr Kelly said, and if Covid is also putting pressure on beds they will "probably end up with waiting lists not being prioritised".

Yesterday, Taoiseach Micheál Martin said the rising number of cases of Covid-19 is very serious and said he has been concerned about the Delta variant for some time.

He is due to meet Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan and other public health figures on Wednesday, where they are expected to discuss the recent rise in cases, and look ahead to the situation expected in August and September.

EU Digital Covid Certificates

From tomorrow, new advice and rules relating to international travel are due to come into effect.

Ireland will join the rest of the EU in rolling out the Digital Covid Certificate, which has enabled people to travel within the bloc since 1 July.

Under the DCC system, fully vaccinated people, those with a negative test and people who have recovered from the virus within the last six months can travel to and from destinations across the EU.

The President of the Irish Travel Agents Association Paul Hackett has said the industry expects "demand to be strong but measured" over the coming weeks, as non-essential travel takes off again.

Mr Hackett, who is also the Chief Executive of Click & Go, said there is pent up demand but he said "it's tempered and it's not people booking huge volumes currently. There is a lot of research going on and thinking about it."

He said: "I think when people see their friends and family in Spain, Greece, Portugal and the Canary Islands and everything's going well, it's worked in the airports, and when they see the reality, that's when demand will really move in."

Mr Hackett said it will provide a big boost to the travel industry.

"Travel agents are bringing back their staff, they're re-hiring their staff and they're looking to recruit, so it's very positive. The airlines are putting on additional capacity and the airports are bringing back their stuff. So for the entire travel industry, which has been locked down for 18 months, tomorrow is a great day."

Specific restrictions and requirements can differ in countries, so in advance of travelling, people are advised to check the latest information.

Also from tomorrow, fully vaccinated people coming from Britain or the United States won't have to self-isolate on arrival in Ireland or take a PCR test 72 hours before departure.

The Chief Executive of the Irish Tourism Industry Confederation Eoghan O'Mara Walsh said the easing of the restriction on non-essential travel "will a big impact" on the tourism sector.

Mr O'Mara Walsh said "it's a very positive day tomorrow. Finally the ban on non-essential travel is being lifted and all European travellers can come to Ireland and indeed UK and US travellers who are vaccinated can come to Ireland."

He said that decision is very important because Britain and the US are "key source strategic markets for the Irish tourism industry, particularly for regional Ireland, and we need all the support we can get in these difficult times."

Mr O'Mara Walsh said: "Americans tend to travel throughout the country and British people tend to come year round, so it's not just the summer season and it's vitally important that those markets are now open again once more to the Irish tourism industry."

Children aged under 12 will also no longer be required to have a negative PCR test or to self-quarantine if travelling into Ireland with fully vaccinated or recovered adults.

People who are fully vaccinated began receiving their EU Digital Covid Certificates last week, either by email or in the post.

The certificates have a QR code, which contains encrypted data on a person's vaccination status obtained from the HSE, while those who have recovered from Covid-19 in the past six months can apply for a Certificate of Recovery.Each country has an app to read the QR codes, but travellers should ensure that they are familiar with the entry requirements of the country they are travelling to.

A leading immunologist has said people who are not fully vaccinated should "think twice" about travelling abroad.

Kingston Mills, Professor of Experimental Immunology at Trinity College Dublin, said "there has to be some return to normal activity, whether that be travel or otherwise."

He said "with fully vaccinated individuals and with the certificate that assures people have been vaccinated, it's probably the prudent move to allow them travel now within Europe."

Professor Mills added: "I think people should think twice about travelling if they're not fully vaccinated.

"I think it's much safer for those who have been vaccinated with two doses in the case of the AstraZeneca, Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, and one dose in the case of the Janssen vaccine."

He said the Delta variant is very transmissible and "the risks are very great, so it really has to be taken seriously."