A professor of immunovirology at University College Cork has called for better financial supports for the hospitality sector so Ireland could become an outdoor dining society.
He said that financial supports to encourage outdoor dining should be “much higher” so that Ireland could become an outdoor dining society.
Prof Fanning said: "The financial supports that have been mooted are relatively small, around 17 million, it should be an awful lot larger than that.
Professor Liam Fanning told Newstalk Breakfast that he had been surprised by data from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) which indicated that there had been just one confirmed case of Covid-19 in every thousand had been traced to outdoor transmission.
Of the 232,164 cases of Covid-19 recorded in the State up to March 24 this year, 262 were as a result of outdoor transmission, representing 0.1% of the total.
Prof Fanning said that while there was an obvious difference between indoor and outdoor transmission, he thought there could be a slight bias in the data and that the figures were on the lower limit.
"Now there's definitely a difference between outdoor activity and infection and indoor activity and infection. The 0.1% is probably the lower limit of what it could go to and I imagine it's somewhere between that and 1%."
There were 42 outbreaks associated with outdoor gatherings, with one community outbreak accounting for seven cases, according to the data from the HPSC.