DUBLIN and Limerick are facing the prospect of localised lockdowns due to their increasing rates of coronavirus.
It's understood that a decision will be made by Friday on whether or not to go ahead with the county-wide lockdowns.
A senior minister has reportedly warned that the situation is "very likely" to happen after Covid-19 figures rocketed to 307 yesterday - with more than half of those in Dublin.
The unnamed minister, who spoke to the Irish Daily Mail, admitted: "The figures are very high today, almost unsustainable, and we will have to see how it goes the next couple of days.
"There is a pivotal NPHET meeting on Thursday, then a Covid Cabinet subcommittee after that.
"And then Cabinet may be brought forward to Monday or even Friday to decide what nationwide and regional measures have to be taken."
Minister Simon Harris refused to confirm that Dublin and Limerick faced lockdown, ominously stating that it is "not the position as of today," but freely admitted that the situation in both counties was "delicate".
Elsewhere, Tánaiste Leo Varadkar admitted that a ban on visiting other people's homes could be implemented in the two counties - similarly to the one put in place in Glasgow - in an attempt to curb the spread of the virus.
"They took a decision, rather than closing schools again or closing childcare and business again, that they would go really hard on gatherings within the home and that is an option that I think we will have to consider if the numbers keep rising," Varadkar said.
"What I don't know, and I'd be interested in hearing from the experts, is whether that has been effective in Glasgow."