The Department of Health confirmed on Friday night that the number of coronavirus cases in Ireland had risen to 18.
These are spread across the country with all but one of those cases having contracted the disease through contact with people who recently travelled home from northern Italy.
Numbers are expected to rise in the coming days, with one leading health expert warning that the COVID-19 “will be spreading within our communities within weeks”.
Dr Sarah Doyle, a specialist in public health medicine, told a HSE briefing on Thursday: “Everyone needs to get ready.
“As we move into the next phase, we will be saying to everybody, even those with very mild symptoms, they will need to be to self isolating.
“So people may feel fit to go to work but they are at risk of spreading infection. So workplaces and each and every one of us need to think about what that means for us.”
Yesterday marked the first confirmed case of the virus in someone who hadn’t been to northern Italy or in contact with anyone who had.
Dr Tony Holohan, Chief Medical Officer with the Department of Health, said: “Ireland remains in containment phase with just one case of community transmission.
“This is, however, a rapidly evolving situation. Public health doctors are working hard to ensure our containment measures are operating effectively.
“Most people who become infected with Covid-19 experience a mild illness and recover, but it can be more severe for some.”
Here’s a guide to where all cases of the coronavirus have been confirmed in the Republic of Ireland so far:
– Two cases have been confirmed in Dublin – one in Glasnevin, while the other linked to Trinity College.
– Four other cases have been confirmed in the east of the country but the exact locations are not being released.
– Two females in the west of the country have contracted the disease after traveling from northern Italy.
– A family of four in Co Clare are all confirmed to have COVID-19. One of these is a male doctor who worked a shift at University Hospital Limerick since returning home after not displaying any symptoms.
– The first community transmitted case was recorded at Cork University Hospital on Thursday. The hospital is now currently tracing where the man contracted the disease.