THE dreaded 'second wave' of coronavirus has already struck Ireland, according to health experts.
On Wednesday, the Department of Health released the latest infection figures, and specialists informed the Oireachtas that Ireland is indeed at the beginning of a second wave of Covid-19.
Professor Sam McConkey stressed that physical distancing is needed to "crush the curve into the ground".
He said that it will also be impossible to prevent the re-entry of Covid-19 into nursing homes unless it is controlled within the community.
An advisor to the World Health Organization (WHO) suggested this week that Ireland should allow a "controlled" spread of the virus among young people in order to build up herd immunity and lower the possibility of community transmission.
Johan Giesecke, Sweden's former chief epidemiologist and a member of the WHO's strategic and technical advisory group for infectious hazards, made the comments at the Oireachtas coronavirus committee on Wednesday morning.
Mr Giesecke suggested that the Government adopt this tactic in order to prioritise protecting elderly and vulnerable people.
He also advised against building a strategy around a possible vaccine, as there could be a long wait for a cure, and even if one is found it could take even longer for it to be mass-produced and made available to whoever needs/wants it.
Intensive contact tracing and testing of contacts would be a far more advisable route to take, according to Mr Giesecke.
Of the new cases of Covid-19 announced on Wednesday, 103 cases are in Dublin, 30 in Donegal, 22 in Galway, 21 in Cork, 13 in Wicklow, 12 in Louth, 9 in Kildare, 8 in Meath, with the remaining 17 spread across 10 counties.