Household close contacts who are fully vaccinated and showing no symptoms will have to restrict their movements until they have three negative antigen test results within five days.

The change of policy for household contacts was agreed by Cabinet and comes into immediate effect.

Previous advice for people who were fully vaccinated or had Covid-19 within the previous nine months was that they did not need to restrict their movements.

Restricting movements means avoiding social situations and contact with other people and to stay at home as much as possible.

People can go outside to exercise, but must keep two metres away from other people.

People who are asked to restrict their movements should not go to work (unless you work on your own and can completely avoid other people), should not go to school or college; do not use public transport or have visitors to the home and do not visit others.

People should also not go to the shops, pharmacy, social gatherings, or meet face-to-face with people at high risk of Covid-19.

Read more: Latest coronavirus stories

The Taoiseach said the country is experiencing another surge of Covid infection.

In an address from Government Buildings, he said that for every four detected cases there may be as many as six undetected cases.

He outlined a change to some public health restrictions including that midnight will be the new closing time for bars, restaurants and nightclubs from Thursday midnight.

Everyone is asked to return to working from home, unless absolutely necessary to attend in person.

Covid certs will now be required for access to cinemas and theatres but not for gyms and hairdressers.