Health Minister Simon Harris says pubs won’t reopen until ‘a vaccine or an effective treatment’ is found
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Health Minister Simon Harris says pubs won’t reopen until ‘a vaccine or an effective treatment’ is found

PUBS WILL not fully re-open in Ireland until a vaccine or effective treatment for coronavirus is found, according to Minister for Health Simon Harris. 

Speaking in an interview with the Sunday Independent, Mr. Harris warned that mass gatherings of any kind are likely to be prohibited for the foreseeable future while pubs won’t reopen before the summer. 

The Minister for Health said the re-opening of schools is likely to be the first step towards the loosening of Ireland’s currently lockdown measures. 

Under proposals being considered, students would be allowed to attend school for a day a week, with classes and year groups staggered and spaced out accordingly. 

The government is also exploring the idea of allowing those over 70 and currently cocooning the freedom to go for a walk outside their home. 

Another proposal could see the current 2km exercise limit raised for those living under the current lockdown restrictions. 

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"I'd like to see a situation whereby our schools could come back or at least could come partially back,” Mr Harris sid. 

"What's not going to come back quickly are scenarios in which we can't safely socially distance,” the Minister for Health added. 

"So I can't see how people can be in packed pubs again as long as this virus is still with us and we don't have a vaccine or an effective treatment." 

Restrictions, as they are, are set to be in place until May 5, when a decision will be made to extend, increase or reduce them. 

A further 41 people died from coronavirus in Ireland this past Saturday, April 18 while a further 778 cases were confirmed.