Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates

1 day ago

Situation updates prior to June 1, 2020

Situation updates prior to June 1, 2020, have now been archived. If you are looking for a particular update that has now been archived, please contact us.

Welsh Government confirms international travel changes and calls for PCR test retention

The Welsh Government has confirmed it will merge the green and amber travel lists into one and remove the requirement for pre-departure testing for those fully vaccinated.

The changes are intended to be made by October 4th in alignment with the new UK government system.

A decision on moving away from PCR tests is still to be made but the Welsh Government has outlined its opposition to the change and is calling on the UK government to reverse its decision.

Welsh Government statement

Chief Medical Officer encourages pregnant women to have Covid-19 vaccine

The Chief Medical Officer for Wales, Dr Frank Atherton is appealing to pregnant women to accept their COVID-19 vaccine when offered.

This follows the rise in the number of unvaccinated pregnant women being admitted to hospital with COVID-19 who are experiencing serious illness.

The Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (RCOG) and the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) both recommend vaccination as one of the best defences against severe infection.

Chief Medical Officer for Wales statement

Covid Pass for events and nightclubs announced

People will have to show a NHS Covid Pass to enter nightclubs and attend events in Wales from next month, the First Minister announced today.

The measure is being introduced to help control the spread of coronavirus – cases are currently very high in Wales but the alert level will remain at zero for the next 3 weeks.

Announcing the outcome of the latest 3-week review of the coronavirus regulations, the First Minister today encouraged everyone to work from home whenever possible and to make sure they are fully vaccinated.

Awareness and enforcement of other key coronavirus protection measures, including face coverings in indoor public places and on public transport, will be increased.

Full Welsh Government statement

JCVI announcement Autumn booster programme

Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services: "Some months ago, the JCVI was asked whether a campaign should be launched to give people a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, as a result of emerging evidence of reduced immunity over time. Following weeks of discussion and consideration of evidence, the JCVI has provided its final advice, which recommends the autumn booster campaign for certain groups."

The single priority group lists:

  • Those living in residential care homes for older adults
  • All adults aged 50 years or over
  • Frontline health and social care workers
  • All those aged 16 to 49 years with underlying health conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19 (as set out in the Green Book), and adult carers
  • Adult household contacts of immunosuppressed individuals

Full statement

JCVI & Chief Medical Officers’ advice on vaccinating 12-15 year olds

Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services: "After careful consideration, on public health grounds, the UK CMOs recommend that all children and young people aged 12-15 not already covered by existing JCVI advice should be offered a first dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine."

Full statement

JCVI advice offering further vaccinations to individuals who are severely immunosuppressed

"Today, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) have advised that a third COVID-19 vaccine primary dose be offered to individuals, aged 12 years and over, who were severely immunosuppressed at the time of either, or both, of their first two vaccine doses. This is because some individuals who are severely immunosuppressed due to underlying health conditions or certain medical treatments may not produce a full immune response to COVID-19 vaccination," Eluned Morgan MS, Minister for Health and Social Services

Full Welsh Government statement

Weekly Hywel Dda UHB vaccine bulletin

Every week Hywel Dda UHB publish a vaccine bulletin, providing up-to-date information regarding the progress of the Covid-19 Mass Vaccination Programme across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.

ISSUE 34 IS AVAILABLE TO READ

No changes to COVID rules in Wales

First Minister Mark Drakeford is urging people in Wales to get vaccinated and keep taking familiar steps to help address rising coronavirus cases.

It comes as he confirms there will be no significant changes to Covid rules in this 21-day regulations cycle.

Full Welsh Government statement

Children and young people to be removed from shielding list

Children and young people will be removed from the list of people who would be asked to shield and will no longer be considered clinically extremely vulnerable in relation to COVID-19, the Minister for Health and Social Services, Eluned Morgan, has announced.

Full Welsh Government statement

Support and advice for businesses during alert level 0

We continue to work with the Health and Safety Executive @H_S_E to check in with businesses in Carmarthenshire to ensure they are operating safely at alert level 0.

The HSE, working alongside our officers, is providing advice and guidance to manage risk and protect workers, customers and visitors and taking action where there are concerns about safety.

No one left behind as Health Boards work to vaccinate all over-16s

Health Minister Eluned Morgan encourages everyone to take up their offer of a COVID vaccine, with confirmation that all 16 and 17 year olds in Wales will have received their offer of a COVID vaccine by the end of this week. 

Welsh Government statement

Self-isolation at alert level 0

How and when you and your household need to self-isolate if you have symptoms, tested positive, or have been in contact with somebody who has Covid-19 at alert level 0.

Self-isolation guidance

First Minister confirms Wales to enter alert level zero from 7 August 2021

Here are the key changes coming into effect from 6am tomorrow:

There will be no limit on the number of people you can meet indoors or outdoors, including in private homes, public places or at events.

The few remaining businesses who were still required to be closed, including nightclubs, will be able to reopen.

You will no longer legally have to wear masks in hospitality settings where food and drink is being served. But we still encourage you to wear them in those settings where this is practical.

If you’re fully vaccinated or under 18, you’ll no longer need to isolate if you’ve been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus. You'll still need a test on days 2 and 8. And anyone who tests positive must isolate for 10 days.

Businesses, workplaces and places open to the public must take reasonable measures to minimise the risk of coronavirus. They will also have more flexibility to tailor their coronavirus measures based on their risk assessment - this may mean less emphasis on physical distancing.

It is everything you have done, and the hard work of our vaccinators, that means we're able to lift restrictions further and see some normality.

More information here: https://gov.wales/wales-moves-alert-level-zero

 

 

Fully vaccinated adults will no longer need to self-isolate

All adults who have been fully vaccinated will no longer have to self-isolate if they are identified as close contacts of someone with coronavirus from the 7 August.

Children and young people under 18 will also be exempt from the need to self-isolate if they are also identified as close contacts of a positive case.  But everyone who tests positive for coronavirus or has symptoms must continue to isolate for 10 days, whether they have been vaccinated or not.

Self-isolation support payments

If you have been advised to self-isolate via the NHS Covid-19 App then you must register your details with Test, Trace, Protect (TTP) within your 10-day isolation period. Further information on how to register with TTP can be found on the NHS website.

Economic resilience fund - Turnover less than £85K

The grant is now open to applications and will remain open for a period of 2 weeks, up to Midday on Monday 9th August.

Support for businesses with a turnover greater than £85,000 will be provided directly by the Welsh Government. You can apply for this grant on the Business Wales website, the grant will close at midday on Tuesday 27 July 2021.

Apply for ERF

Situation updates prior to April 1, 2021

Situation updates prior to April 1, 2021, have now been archived. If you are looking for a particular update that has now been archived, please contact us.

JCVI announcement on vaccinating Children & Young People

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been extended until 30 September 2021. From 1 July 2021, the government will pay 70% of wages up to a maximum cap of £2,187.50 for the hours the employee is on furlough.

From 1 August 2021, the government will pay 60% of wages up to a maximum cap of £1,875 for the hours the employee is on furlough.

For claims from 1st July 2021, employers must top up employees’ wages to make sure they receive 80% of their wages (up to £2,500) for the hours they are on furlough. The caps are proportional to the hours not worked.

Find out more about how the scheme is changing.

Claims for furlough days in July 2021 must be made by 16 August 2021.

Updates to opening times for walk-ins at mass vaccination centres

First and second dose walk-in vaccine clinics continue to run at all Hywel Dda mass vaccination centre across Carmarthenshire.  

Please check the opening times of your local centre below and call in to receive your first vaccine dose, available for anyone aged 18 and over, or your second vaccine dose if it is due (eight weeks after your first):    

There is no need to contact the health board before attending a walk-in clinic but if you wish to schedule an appointment you can still do so by contacting the booking team on 0300 303 8322 or by emailing COVIDenquiries.hdd@wales.nhs.uk   

“Next steps towards a future with fewer covid rules” – First Minister

From 17 July, Wales will move fully to alert level one, including:

  • Up to six people can meet indoors in private homes and holiday accommodation.  
  • Organised indoor events can take place for up to 1,000 seated and up to 200 standing.
  • Ice rinks can reopen.

Wales will also take the first step into alert level zero as the limits on the numbers of people who can meet in public places or at events will be removed.  Outdoor premises and events will also have greater flexibility around physical distancing.

Also from 17 July other changes include:

  • New rules for children’s residential activity centres so children in groups of up to 30 can visit.
  • A specific requirement for employers to provide comprehensive information on the risks and mitigations identified in the COVID risk assessment with their employees.

If Wales moves to alert level zero on 7 August, all premises would be able to open and most – but not all – restrictions will be removed and replaced with the ongoing requirement for all organisations and businesses to carry out Covid risk assessments. These will determine what reasonable measures are needed to be put in place to keep workers and customers and visitors safe.

There will also be no legal limits on the number of people who can meet others indoors, including in private homes.

Face coverings will continue to be required by law in most indoor public places and on public transport at alert level zero from 7 August, with the exception of hospitality settings.

Full Welsh Government statement

Face coverings to continue to help keep Wales safe

Ministers have confirmed face coverings will continue to play an important role in helping keep us all safe from coronavirus in Wales.

As the Welsh Government prepares to publish an updated Coronavirus Control Plan, setting out what will happen beyond alert level one, face coverings will continue to be required in certain settings, such as public transport and taxis, and health and social care, as a minimum, while coronavirus remains a public health threat.

Active further consideration is being given to whether face coverings should also be required in other settings, such as retail, if restrictions are relaxed further.

Wales is currently at alert level one – face coverings are mandatory in all indoor public places at alert level one and above.

Ministers will hold the regular 21-day review of the coronavirus regulations on Friday, which will set out whether restrictions can be relaxed in some indoor places, including people’s homes.

They will also publish new plans setting out how Wales will move beyond alert level one to a new alert level zero, with fewer legal restrictions.

Read more

Changes to keep schools safe and learners learning

Education Minister Jeremy Miles has written to all headteachers and principals in Wales to provide more clarity on how schools and colleges can continue to operate safely when they return in September.

Three main changes are being proposed to bring some normality back to education ahead of the new autumn term. They are:

  • face coverings will no longer be routinely recommended in classrooms
  • contact groups will no longer be required for school pupils or full-time learners in colleges. We will use our TTP system in order to identify close contacts of learners who have tested positive
  • normal session times will resume

More information

A Call to Arms – drop in for your dose this weekend

Vaccination centres across many parts of Wales will be open for walk-in appointments from this weekend as the Health Minister makes a call to all adults to get their jab.

So far, 75% of people aged under-50 in Wales have had their first dose. 

All over 18s can attend some vaccination centres to get their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine without needing an appointment, and young adults in particular are being encouraged to take up this offer.

Digital NHS COVID Pass available in Wales for urgent travel

People living in Wales who have received the COVID vaccine will be able to access their vaccination status via the internet from today to generate an NHS COVID Pass for urgent outbound international travel.

Welsh Government statement

Rule changes on hold for 4 weeks as delta spreads

First Minister Mark Drakeford will announce a 4-week pause to the coronavirus rules on Friday (June 18) to help boost protection against the new delta variant.

Wales’ world-leading vaccine programme will speed up second doses over the next 4 weeks – with a planned deployment of more than half a million doses to help prevent a fresh wave of serious illness as cases of coronavirus begin to rise.

The latest figures show there are almost 490 cases of the delta variant in Wales. More than 4 out 5 new Covid cases in Wales are the delta variant and two-thirds of these are not linked to travel or contact with another case, suggesting community spread.

Wales’ coronavirus case rate has risen steadily since the end of May and the positivity rate has more than doubled – but it remains the lowest in the UK.

Full Welsh Government statement

Health Minister urges people to get vaccinated as Delta variant cases rise

As Wales sees an increase in cases of the Delta variant, people are being urged to take up their offer of a vaccine.

Full Welsh Government statement

Situation updates prior to March 1, 2021

Situation updates prior to March 1, 2021, have now been archived. If you are looking for a particular update that has now been archived, please contact us.

Weekly Hywel Dda UHB vaccine bulletin

Every week Hywel Dda UHB publish a vaccine bulletin, providing up-to-date information regarding the progress of the Covid-19 Mass Vaccination Programme across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.

ISSUE 23 IS AVAILABLE TO READ

Walk-in vaccine clinics

There are walk-in vaccine clinics being held between Thursday 17 and Sunday 20 June. There is no need to contact the health board to book an appointment. If you have a scheduled appointment for those dates, please keep your appointment time. If you have already registered using our online form, you are still welcome to attend the walk-in clinic.

First dose walk-in vaccine clinics (aged 18 and over)

  • Aberystwyth (Thomas Parry Library, SY23 3FL) 10am to 8pm on Thursday 17 June, Friday 18 June, Saturday 19 June and Sunday 20 June
  • Carmarthen (Halliwell Conference Centre, UWTSD, SA31 3EP) 10am to 8pm on Thursday 17 June, Friday 18 June, Saturday 19 June and Sunday 20 June
  • Haverfordwest (Pembrokeshire Archives, SA61 2PE) 10am to 8pm on Thursday 17 June, Friday 18 June, Saturday 19 June and Sunday 20 June
  • Llanelli (Ffwrnes Theatre, SA15 3YE) 10am to 8pm on Thursday 17 June, Friday 18 June, Saturday 19 June and Sunday 20 June
  • Tenby (Tenby Leisure Centre, SA70 8EJ) 10am to 8pm on Sunday 20 June

Second dose walk-in vaccine clinics

Please attend one of the following second dose walk-in clinic if you had a first dose of the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine on or before 25 April:

  • Carmarthen (drive-in only - United Counties Showground, SA33 5DR) 10am to 8pm on Thursday 17 June and Friday 18 June
  • Tenby (Tenby Leisure Centre, SA70 8EJ) 10am to 8pm on Friday 18 June and Saturday 19 June

Vaccines will be allocated on a first come, first serve basis. There is no need to contact the health board to book an appointment. If you have a scheduled appointment for those dates, please keep your appointment time. If you have already registered using our online form, you are still welcome to attend the walk-in clinic.

If you or someone you know is unable to use an online form, please contact our booking team on 0300 303 8322.

 

Important: By travelling to a centre, you accept there is a risk that all vaccines will be allocated before you arrive. If you arrive after all the vaccines are allocated, we will take your contact details and add you to our reserve list.

 

Help for learners to take their next steps as Wales moves forward

Jeremy Miles, the Minister for Education and Welsh Language, has published the Welsh Government’s Renew and Reform plan for education.

The plan sets out how the Welsh Government will use £150 million in additional investment in 2021-22 to continue to support learners, teachers and staff at all levels to help the education system in Wales recover following the pandemic.

More information

 

Weekly Hywel Dda UHB vaccine bulletin

Every week Hywel Dda UHB publish a vaccine bulletin, providing up-to-date information regarding the progress of the Covid-19 Mass Vaccination Programme across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.

ISSUE 22 IS AVAILABLE TO READ

Pontyberem Covid-19 cluster

A small cluster of Covid-19 cases has been identified in the Pontyberem area. At present there are 18 cases (correct as at 09/06/21) which are linked to known social gatherings or where the virus has been passed between people living together.

More information

First Minister confirms phased move to alert level one

Up to 30 people will be able to meet outdoors and large outdoor activities will be able to take place from Monday, as Wales moves into alert level one. 

The size of extended households can be increased to up to three households, and a further household with a single adult or single adult with caring responsibilities will also be able to join.

The move to alert level one will be phased, with outdoor events opening first. Ministers will review the public health situation again, ahead of June 21, to determine whether indoor events can restart.

The first phase of the move to alert level one means that from Monday June 7:

  • Up to 30 people can meet outdoors, including in private gardens, outdoor hospitality and public places
  • Larger outdoor organised gatherings and events, such as concerts, football matches and sporting activities, like organised running groups can go ahead for up to 4,000 people standing and 10,000 people seated. All organisers planning events and activities must undertake a full risk assessment and put in place measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, including social distancing

The Welsh Government will consider further changes to the regulations on indoor activity later in the month, if public health conditions allow.

These include:

  • Rule of six for meeting indoors in private homes and holiday accommodation 
  • Increased numbers for indoor organised gatherings and indoor events
  • Opening ice skating rinks

Full Welsh Government statement

Now open - Economic Resilience Fund

The Welsh Government is making a further package of business support available through the Economic Resilience Fund (ERF).

The ERF will provide support in the form of cash grants for businesses, social enterprises and charities and associated supply chain businesses that have been affected financially as a result of ongoing COVID-19 restrictions.

The grants will help meet operating costs (excluding staff wages) directly impacted by the restrictions in place for the period from May 1, 2021 to June 30, 2021.

The grant is open to applications in Carmarthenshire from noon on June 3 and will close at 5pm on June 30.

More information

 

Weekly Hywel Dda UHB vaccine bulletin

Every week Hywel Dda UHB publish a vaccine bulletin, providing up-to-date information regarding the progress of the Covid-19 Mass Vaccination Programme across Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.

ISSUE 21 IS AVAILABLE TO READ

Contact tracing in Wales extended until March 2022

A further £32m will be invested to extend contact tracing to March 2022.

Welsh Government statement

Get rapid lateral flow COVID-19 tests if you do not have symptoms