There have been two further Covid-19 deaths and an additional 89 cases until Tuesday. This makes 117,676 cases and 2,118 deaths so far.
Last Friday there were 105 cases in hospital with 16 in intensive care and 10 patients having their breathing supported by ventilation.
Almost 780,000 in the Six Counties have received one dose of vaccine and 163,818 have received two doses. In the South there have been 4,718 deaths and, as of Tuesday, 320 cases bringing the total to 238,466. Some 655,292 have received one dose of vaccine and 268,586 two doses.
As we move from an unconventional Easter with loyalist rioting, our thoughts will turn once more to progress with the pandemic.
Boris has outlined the next phase of opening up in England with retail, hairdressers, nail salons, gyms and outdoor hospitality to open on 12 April. Also opening will be libraries, community centres, zoos, theme parks and drive-in cinemas. Self-contained accommodation, including campsites and holiday lets will also be allowed to receive guests. Bars and restaurants will be allowed to serve customers outdoors, but groups will be limited to two households or by the ‘rule of six’.
Discussions continue about so-called ‘vaccine passports’ with a review suggesting that a certification scheme could have an important temporary role.
In the south An Tánaiste, Dr Varadkar has suggested that additional freedoms might be granted to those who are fully vaccinated.
The next phase here is to be decided on 15 April if the Executive can come together. Some decisions on travel to green countries are expected on 17 May but the orange and red lists may change by then.
Restrictions are due to end on 21 June but mask wearing and social distancing may continue. A lot of the uncertainty depends on how well vaccines perform in real life (31.6m doses given in UK), how prevalent the virus is and the incidence of variants or mutations of the virus.
There are concerns as to how countries such as France are doing. Testing is to be introduced to identify cases who do not have symptoms.
Our pathway allows consideration of these factors between phases. Concerns are raised again by the European Medicines Agency about the association with brain clots (cerebral venous sinus thromboses) and the AstraZeneca vaccine. That works out as about 1 in 600,000. That's not a small ratio if you get one.
Some American vaccines are on the way, such as the Moderna vaccine which is being used in the Republic, and are due here in the third week in April.
We may no longer be as dependent on AstraZeneca.