The Chief Medical Officer says there are encouraging signs the country WILL be in a position to start easing the lockdown next week.

Phase one of the government's plan is due to begin on Monday, which includes the resumption of outdoor work and the reopening of some retail stores.

However, a final decision will be made later this week, once updated advice is provided by the National Public Health Emergency Team.

It comes as new figures show there are 23,242 confirmed cases of the virus, while 1,488 people have died.

An additional 15 cases have been confirmed in Mayo, bringing the total number to 537.

Co Roscommon has recorded an additional 50 cases, bringing the confirmed number to 297.

Galway has reached the 400 mark while there are 127 confirmed cases in Sligo.

But Dr Tony Holohan says there are good signs progress is being made in a number of important areas:

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