Statement on COVID-19 public health measures – 7th December 2021

Updated Public Health Measures – December 2021


  • the government approves additional public health measures to help to reduce the spread of COVID-19
  • extra economic supports approved for sectors impacted by public health measures
  • limited reopening of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment approved for workers who are temporarily laid off due to the impact of public health measures
  • the government notes strong public health advice on household visits and the acknowledged need for flexibility around the immediate Christmas period


Read full Statement here


The COVID-19 situation in Ireland is uncertain and of concern. We remain vulnerable to a further deterioration depending on a number of factors, including levels of social contact, adherence to basic public health protective measures, and levels of immunity across the population.

The current level of COVID-19 is having a significant and sustained impact across all aspects of the health service, including in hospitals, Intensive Care Units (ICUs), public health, testing and tracing services, general practice, as well as the broader primary care services.

Following public health advice, the government has agreed a range of measures aimed at interrupting the spread of COVID-19 in the community.

Coming into immediate effect:

  • Household close contacts who are fully vaccinated and showing no symptoms should now restrict their movements until they have 3 negative antigen test results within 5 days.

Working from home:

Following today’s decisions, engagement has taken place with employers and trade unions, through the Labour Employer Economic Forum, on updating guidance on working from home unless necessary to attend in person, as well as strengthening communication on protective measures, as outlined in the Work Safely Protocol, for those who continue to attend workplaces.

The government continues to offer a range of economic supports to assist businesses and individuals impacted by the pandemic as set out in the Economic Recovery Plan, which are amongst the most extensive direct supports offered within the EU. They include the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (with expenditure to date of over €5.4bn), tax warehousing, a targeted commercial rates waiver, along with low-cost loan schemes to businesses, such as the COVID-19 Credit Guarantee Scheme, mentoring programmes, and direct grant programmes. A range of sectoral supports also remain in place and, through the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, the Gaeltacht, Sports and the Media, the government remains in ongoing contact with the hospitality and entertainment sectors on the challenges they face due to COVID-19.

everyone should revert to working from home unless it is necessary to attend the workplace in person.

From midnight on Thursday the 18th of November:

  • you will need COVID-19 passes (based on vaccination or recovery) for cinemas and theatres
  • closing times for all on-licensed premises (except for guests staying in hotels) will move to midnight with all customers vacated from the premises by that time


Read the full statement here.