The Chief Medical Officer says there's "nothing inevitable" about a third wave of Covid-19 after Christmas.
New guidelines on how people can socialise over the festive season, while keeping the virus at low levels, are being drawn up by NPHET.
A further 270 cases of the virus were confirmed last night with one additional death, while the estimated 14 day incidence has fallen to 161.The current Level 5 measures are due to expire on December 1st, with fears over another spike in cases when restrictions are relaxed.
Dr Tony Holohan says the lower the cases are in the run-up to Christmas, the better.
Meanwhile Health officials say it's still early days in the development of a Covid 19 vaccine - but that the latest news is positive. Initial results show a Pfizer jab can prevent more than 90 percent of people getting the virus.
The company's now expected to apply for emergency approval for the vaccine later this month.