The head of the HSE says Covid-19 restrictions are working as there's further improvements in the numbers of people in hospital with the virus.

Paul Reid says there are 279 patients with the virus in hospitals nationwide, with 37 in ICU.

It comes as the national 14-day incidence rate per 100,000 people has fallen to 196.4 - down from 202 on Thursday.

There are 499 new cases of Covid-19 in the Republic and 8 more people with the virus have died.

There are 26 new cases in Mayo, 18 in Galway, eight in Roscommon and less than five in both Sligo & Leitrim.

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