The 14-day incidence rate of Covid-19 has reached its highest level since early February.
Deputy chief medical officer Dr Ronan Glynn says it has risen to 386 per 100,000 people, after over 18,000 cases in the past two weeks.
A total of 188 Covid patients were in public hospitals last night, with 30 in intensive care units.
Meanwhile, Ministers have been warned that the number of Covid patients in hospital could double by the end of the month.
However, Government will still prepare a plan for the removal or easing of all remaining restrictions.
The Cabinet subcommittee was presented with new figures on Friday, they suggested there may be 400 Covid patients in hospital by the end of the month.
As of 8am on Friday, there were 189 coronavirus patients in Irish hospitals.
The subcommittee was told that Ireland has not yet reached the peak of the latest wave of the virus.
Sources told The Irish Times that the meeting heard Ireland was likely to follow the same pattern as the UK, with cases declining from a peak in the coming weeks.
The positive effect of vaccines means projected hospitalisations are substantially lower than they were for previous waves of the disease.
However, HSE chief executive Paul Reid warned the committee that Covid patients have a disproportionate impact on the healthcare system due to the need to isolate them and sometimes create dedicated wards.
Despite the fact hospitals are busier than normal, Ministers were told that non-Covid care is continuing unlike during previous waves of Covid.
A HSE survey requested by Cabinet found the majority of people in hospital with Covid were being treated for the disease, while around a quarter tested positive but were not sick with the disease.