The Health Service Executive (HSE) has warned of a new variant of Covid-19 named Eris, which it said has been associated with 644 new cases of the virus over the past week, a 50% increase over the previous week.
It has also been associated with outbreaks in hospitals. However, there is no evidence of an increase in the severity of infection and the Government is not planning public health restrictions.
Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Chief Clinical Officer of the HSE Colm Henry has said there has not been any surge in intensive care admissions due to the variant but it is being attributed to an increase in community transmission in recent weeks.
It is normal for viruses to mutate, he said calling Eris a variant of Omicron which has already been seen in hospitals. Mutations displace the existing variant of a virus, he said. "What we're seeing now is this, EG.5.