There are fears the Reproduction or ‘R’ number could spike as the hospital sectors reopen on July 3 as people start to move back into some sort of normality.
Chief Medical Officer Dr Michael McBride said the R number is less reliable than the increasingly important number of new cases as community transmission falls.
The R number is the number of people that one infected person will pass the virus on to, on average.
Speaking at the Stormont health committee today, Dr McBride has urged people to keep adhering to good hand and respiratory hygiene.
And where social distancing isn’t possible, to heed the executive’s “very strong” advice and wear face coverings.
“The virus doesn’t spread itself, we spread it,” he said.
“There is no doubt we will see localised clusters and we will see outbreaks.”
The R number in the North of Ireland is said to be between 0.6 and 0.9.
The Department of Health reported today that there had been no further deaths from COVID-19 in the past 24 hours in a hospital setting in the North of Ireland, with three new cases reported.
There has already been a renewed lockdown in the city of Leciester for a further two weeks because of a spike in new cases of COVID-19 as many businesses prepared to reopen this Saturday, July 4.