There are now 8 hospitals with no Covid patients, according to the head of the HSE.

Two South East hospitals are among the eight, St Lukes in Kilkenny and University Hospital Waterford.

Last night, there were 59 patients with the virus in Irish hospitals with 23 in intensive care.

It is the lowest number of patients in hospital since September 13th and the lowest number in intensive care since St Stephen’s day.

HSE chief executive Paul Reid said the benefits of the vaccine programme are clear to see.

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