Delta variant now most dominant strain of Covid 19 in Wales as number of cases rise to 315
Public Health Wales (PHW) has said the Delta variant of Covid-19 now the most common variant of new cases in Wales.
The number of cases of the Delta variant has risen to 315, up by 131 cases since the last update given on 10 June.
The variant is now the dominant strain of new cases of Coronavirus in Wales and the case numbers are expected to rise further over the coming weeks.
Localised community transmission of the variant is evident, with the majority of new cases not being connected to international travel.
The majority of the Delta cases in Wales have been focused around a cluster of cases in North Wales and a cluster of cases in South Wales πbut we are also starting to see unlinked cases in these areas and elsewhere in Wales.” PHW has said.
During today’s Welsh government press conference, economy minister Vaughan Gething said: “The Delta variant has quickly become the dominant form of new Covid-19 cases in England and Scotland with over 42,000 cases identified.”
“In Wales, we have now identified 315 cases of the Delta variant despite our extensive efforts to minimise the spread, we expect to see more.”
“The Delta variant has meant that we have needed to take a phased approach to move to alert level one here in Wales, relaxing restrictions around outdoor events and activities first.”
“Evidence continues to suggest that the risk of infection is significantly lower outdoors, compared to indoors.”
Boris Johnson is expected to announce later today that those restrictions will remain in place in England for another four weeks amid rising cases of the Delta variant.
Mr Gething said: “We’ll carry on with the approach we’ve taken here in Wales, in general, being guided by the data, not dates, and we hope that’ll provide as much certainty as we can for people in Wales because we’re still living through some uncertain times.”
He said the “first minister will confirm the position here in Wales on Friday and the cabinet will continue to discuss these matters through this week.”
“They will take account of the evidence that we would expect to get from our own chief medical officer, from our own scientific advisors and the technical advisory group.”
“The Delta variant has taken off much more significantly in Scotland and in England, their case rates are materially higher than here in Wales.”
“We’re starting to see the real world impact of whether the Delta variant does cause more people to need hospitalisation and actually the impact that vaccination has or hasn’t had on reducing the numbers of people who need hospital treatment.”
Dr Giri Shankar, Incident Director for the Coronavirus response at Public Health Wales, said:
“This is a significant development, but one we have predicted, as we know the Delta variant is easier to catch than the previously dominant Alpha variant. It is thought that increased mixing is contributing to transmission and we are concerned at this rise in cases.
“There is much we can do to protect ourselves and others. Latest evidence shows that both Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines are effective against the Delta variant after two doses and so it’s so important to take up the offer of both vaccines.
“By remaining at least two metres away from everyone else, washing our hands regularly, and wearing a face covering we can keep ourselves and our friends and family safe.
“If you develop any symptoms, you must self-isolate and get a test if you or anyone in your household develop symptoms.”
There is a Q&A on the Delta Variant (VOC-21APR-02) on the Public Health Wales website (FAQs: the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) Coronavirus variant – Public Health Wales (nhs.wales))
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