The head of NPHET's modelling group says he has no concerns about the plan to reopen society over the summer.
Professor Philip Nolan says the measures announced by Government last week have been "carefully calibrated".
He believes the planned reopening can work if people follow the rules.
The planned easing of restrictions begins on Tuesday with the full return of construction.
However, there'll then be a range of measures from Monday May 10th - including intercounty travel, the reopening of retail and hairdressers, and larger outdoors meetups.
Professor Nolan says society now needs to start reopening after a lengthy lockdown.
However, he said variants could cause a "bump on the road".
He said: "If B117 is at the upper end of transmissibility, we could unfortunately see an increase in case numbers.
"That's why we have this very cautious approach - one thing at a time, the safest things first.
"We're going to have to learn as we go, and there might be a bump in the road if we learn something is less safe than we think it is."
He added that it’s not safe to move any faster than the current reopening plan, and that the approach is more cautious than last summer.