Personal Protection Equipment for frontline health workers is expected to cost more than €1 billion this year.
The figures were released by HSE chief executive Paul Reid.
Mr Reid said that equipment including masks, gowns and gowns were costing €250M each quarter.
Despite initial delays in providing equipment for some workers including many in Donegal, the vast majority of workers currently have adequate PPE.
Mr Reid said there would also be significant costs associated with testing and contact tracing but the cost of not investing in these things was much higher.
“Costs are at a scale that nobody could have foreseen,” he said.
Mr Reid said the current demand for masks alone is 1.2 million a day or nine million a week. He said the HSE now has a new supply deal with South Korea that will supply Ireland with 120 million masks.
The HSE chief said the health service is now in a position to commence non Covid-19 services in a safe way
But he warned the provision of health services will not be easy and will not be the same as before.
Mr Reid said the HSE will need to keep its capacity at about 80% to be able to deal with any coronavirus-related surge and will use both the public and private hospitals to achieve this
He said cancer services, cardiology and other procedures would be among the first services to be prioritised.
Mr Reid also said that while the numbers are good in relation to Covid-19, the situation is still very vulnerable and fragile and that nobody can predict what will happen next.