The Department of Health has said the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) has today been notified of 16,428 confirmed cases of Covid-19 - the highest number of cases reported on any individual day since the pandemic began.
As of 8am today 568 people with Covid-19 are hospitalised, of whom 93 are in ICU.
There has been a total of 5,912 deaths related to Covid-19 notified in Ireland.
This includes 22 deaths newly notified as of last Wednesday.
In a series of Tweets this evening, Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health, Dr Tony Holohan, said today's case numbers mark the "highest ever number of confirmed cases in Ireland".
"The Omicron variant is accelerating rapidly in the community and, given the very high levels of transmission of this new variant nationwide, every individual should consider themselves potentially infectious, and strictly adhere to the public health measures by washing hands regularly, keeping a safe distance from others, avoiding crowded places and reducing social contacts as much as possible," he continued.
The Omicron variant is accelerating rapidly in the community & given the very high levels of transmission of this new variant nationwide, every individual should consider themselves potentially infectious, & strictly adhere to the public health measures by:— Dr Tony Holohan (@CMOIreland) December 29, 2021
Dr Holohan said all of the latest epidemiological indicators "are a cause of concern" and in recent days, the country has seen a rise in new admissions to hospital of Covid-19 patients, at levels not seen since January 2021.
He implored people to avail of the Covid-19 vaccine and the booster jab.
"The Covid-19 vaccine and the vaccine booster provide good protection from Covid-19 infection.
"If you are not yet fully vaccinated or are yet to receive a booster dose, please take the vaccine as soon as it is available to you," he said.
He also urged those who have travelled from overseas to spend time in Ireland to take an antigen test every day for five days.