Ireland will move to "Level 5" alert — the country's highest level of coronavirus restrictions — for six weeks to tackle a surge in cases, Taoiseach Micheál Martin announced on Monday.
The new restrictions will be imposed starting midnight local time Wednesday, but schools and childcare services will remain open unlike the lockdown at the beginning of the pandemic.
Last week, Ireland's National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) recommended to the government for the second time this month that the country should impose stricter measures to stop the spread of the virus.
In early October, the Irish government went against NPHET's recommendation, and instead chose to impose "Level 3" restrictions throughout the country for three weeks.
Under the new restrictions, there should be no social gatherings at homes or in gardens, and restaurants, cafes and bars can only open to provide takeaway services.
Despite the original outline for "Level 5" stating only six people could attend weddings, Martin said they will continue to allow an attendance of 25. The government is also asking people to work from home, unless considered an essential worker.
Last week, Ireland recorded 7,495 new cases and 26 deaths. Two of those deaths recorded occurred in September, and one happened back in June.
This marked a considerable jump in cases from the week before, where 4,510 cases and 17 news deaths were recorded.
On Monday, the total number of cases recorded in the country since the start of the pandemic also surpassed 50,000.
"The days are getting shorter and colder, but I ask you to remember this; even as the winter comes in there is hope, and there is light. If we pull together over the next six weeks, we will have the opportunity to celebrate Christmas in a meaningful way," Martin said during his address to the nation on Monday.