82 new cases of coronavirus were reported in the midlands yesterday.
The cabinet will meet this afternoon to consider bringing in full Level 5 lockdown restrictions.
That would involve non-essential retail and gyms closing and travel limited to 5 kilometres from your home.
The ban on household mixing, due to come in on New Year's Day, could also be brought forward.
It's after 1,546 new cases of Covid-19 were reported yesterday - a record daily figure.
Ferbane's Kevin Doyle, Group Head of News at Independent News and Media, says ministers are likely to tighten restrictions:
Cases are also rising in the midlands, with 82 new coronavirus infections confirmed yesterday.
38 in Laois, 27 in Westmeath and 17 in Offaly.
Despite this, Offaly remains the second lowest 14-day incidence rate at 98.8, while Westmeath is seventh nationally at 136.3.
Laois, meanwhile, has more than double the incidence rate of Offaly at 225.5 per 100,000 people.