Health Minister: Data not politics will be behind the easing of Covid restrictions in Wales
Wales will “have to learn to live” with coronavirus, however decisions on when restrictions will be eased will be driven by “data not by any political deadline that has been set artificially”, the health minister said today.
Boris Johnson will host a press conference this afternoon (Monday 5th July) to set out plans for the final step of the roadmap and the restoring of peoples freedoms in England.
The prime minister is expected to confirm that the majority of the remaining Covid restrictions in England can be lifted from 19 July.
He will outline the future guidance regarding face masks and that wearing them will become a “personal choice,” again that will be for England only.
The latest data and scientific modelling suggest that cases will continue to rise as restrictions are eased, but the link to hospitalisations and deaths has been weakened due to the vaccination programme.
Cases in Wales are “rising exponentially” – with North Wales being particularly affected by the Delta variant.
Flintshire has recorded 318 new Covid cases in the week to June 30th – the second-highest number in Wales.
During today’s Welsh government Coroanvirus press briefing, health minister Eluned Morgan said it was “clear that we are still in a very difficult situation because the case numbers are increasing exponentially still in Wales.”
“Especially those people who haven’t been vaccinated, there’s a real vulnerability for those people.” She said.
But the health minister said, “we are seeing a weakening of that link, we also have to understand that there are other harms that we need to consider and, in particular, the mental health situation, economic situation, the social situations that people find themselves in all of these things now need to put into the mix.”
The next review of Covid restrictions in Wales is due on 15 July, “we will be making recommendations next week on that cycle.” She said.
Although the minister did not give any indication whether Wales would follow plans laid out in England and Scotland, she added that Wales will “have to learn to live with the virus”.
The outcome of the review is expected to be announced by the middle of next week.
“We will of course, as always in Wales, be following the data rather than following the politics.”
“That is what we’ve been doing all the way through this and we will continue to do that.”
“Boris Johnson will do what he thinks is right for England and we will do what’s right for us here in Wales.” The health minister said.
Adding: “We’ve done that throughout the pandemic, we’ve responded to local circumstances, and we will continue to do that and we will be driven by the data not by any political deadline that has been set out artificially, which, time and time again in England has been set, and then missed.”
“We’re not going down that route, we are of course, aware that there is a huge amount of movement across our borders.”
“We do have a very constant dialogue with representatives with of the UK Government and of course, in an ideal world, we would like to move together but if it’s not right for Wales, we won’t be doing that.”
“But as I say we will be making those decisions in our next 21 day review.” Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com