The coronavirus can “come roaring back” if countries get complacent, the World Health Organisation has warned.
Last night, the number of COVID-19 patients in intensive care in Ireland dropped below 40 for the first time this year.
The number in Irish hospitals was also down 12.5% on the same day last week.
There were 383 new confirmed cases announced last night and the five-day moving average has risen 7.5% over the past week.
On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, World Health Organisation (WHO) spokesperson Dr Margaret Harris said the situation in India should serve as a warning to other countries.
“The outbreak in India is really driving the numbers right now,” she said. “They accounted for 46% of the cases worldwide last week.
“We are also seeing a small rise in the western pacific - which was really the star performer - they are now seeing small rises.
“Yes, the other regions are not seeing increases in cases which is good news but no one is safe – absolutely no one is safe.
“Back in February, India was celebrating saying that it had beaten this so we really need to remember that this virus comes roaring back if you give it a minute; give it a chance.”
She said the Indian outbreak could cause issues with vaccine supply for countries that rely on the sub-continent for production.
India imposed a ban on vaccine exports in late March as cases began to surge – a move that was expected to affect the shipment of at least five million doses to the UK.
“Vaccination is one element, one tool, it is not the only thing that is going to control the pandemic,” said Dr Harris.
“Yes, most countries have now really started to step up but we are all facing a problem with shortages – especially those countries that were relying on vaccines being produced out of India.”
As of Sunday, 1,604,644 vaccine doses had been administered in Ireland.
Some 1,159,083 people in Ireland had received at least one dose – around 23% of the population.
Health officials say they expect to set a new vaccine record this week – administering as many as 240,000 jabs.
You can listen back to Dr Harris here: