606 patients in total are in hospitals with Covid today - a 33% increase on last week.
The HSE's considering re-introducing mandatory mask-wearing amid rising Covid cases.
However, a number of leading health experts feel it's not the best way of keeping the current surge at bay.
HSE CEO Paul Reid has said the return of mandatory mask wearing in certain settings would be 'actively considered'.
However, he told the Examiner keeping the virus at bay within hospitals and care settings would be their priority.
The Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation are among the groups who are calling for mandatory masks on public trasport.
Some 606 patients in total are in hospitals with Covid today - a 33 percent increase on last week.
More than 300 people in hospital with Covid are there because of the virus, says the HSE.
Infectious Diseases Consultant Eoghan de Barra says less emphasis should be placed on face coverings, and more on the rollout of the booster: