Health chiefs are ruling out giving the go-ahead to non-essential holiday travel abroad from July 1, dashing the hopes of people who were hoping for a mid-summer getaway.
hief medical officer Dr Tony Holohan said yesterday he did not anticipate any change in the advice that non-essential travel should not be undertaken from July, despite plans by some airlines, like Ryanair, to resume flights.
"We have said for now to avoid non-essential travel," he said, and advised people not to book trips.
He also indicated the new measures which make it compulsory to fill out a locator form when people arrive here on airlines from today, along with advice to self-quarantine for two weeks, may be followed by stricter restrictions.
He said they were looking at "further measures" in relation to quarantine.
The National Public Health Emergency Team (Nphet) has previously asked for quarantine to be made mandatory.
Dr Holohan was speaking as a further 17 deaths were announced and 73 new cases of the virus were reported, higher than in previous days.
"We are a bit worried about that. We are going to watch that," he said.
It is too early to indicate if these new cases occurred since the first phase of lockdown restrictions were eased on May 18.
There is a time lag in the notification of deaths and one of those reported yesterday happened on March 21.
There were four deaths yesterday and three on Monday, the first day since mid-March when no deaths were reported.
Rejecting claims of being too cautious, he said the meeting with Cabinet ministers yesterday led to "perfectly reasonable exchanges".
Defending his decision to keep two metres of physical distancing for now, he said a quarter of droplets from one person can travel two metres.
Asked what he would regard as a small wedding, he said he could not put a number on it at this stage but there will be guidance in the coming weeks.
"What we do know is that hand washing, social distancing and knowing when to self-isolate do work."
"The vast majority of the population understand this," he said.
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