“It is in all our interests for us to work together” – Health Minister reiterates need for face coverings
The Health Minister Eluned Morgan has asked the public of Wales to ‘come with us’ on wearing face coverings.
Today the Health Minister reiterated the desire to help protect the NHS this winter but ensuring people are vaccinated, and have taken up booster and flu jabs as well, “We’re making good progress so far. All eligible care home residents have been offered the booster and almost three quarters of residents have had it more than half of 70 to 74 year olds and a quarter of 65 to 69 year olds have already had the booster As this slide shows one in five people aged 12 and over has had a boost of vaccine or a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.”
Asked about anecdotal evidence of less people wearing masks the Minister said, “It is the responsibility of the public to follow the legal requirements and the legal requirements are that you need to wear a face covering in indoor public places so people need to understand their responsibilities here.
“We have been speaking to local authorities to the police and to other organisations to ask if they can do more in terms of enforcement, but frankly, we need the public to come with us on this. That’s the only way we’re going to get out of this situation. So it is in all our interests for us to work together on this because it’s not just us that it’s going to suffer it’s our parents as our grandparents. You know, this is really about protecting those we love.”
Challenged on why Welsh Government are sticking with a 6 month booster programme rather than shorter times, the Minister said, “My understanding is that the JCVI is still suggesting that people stick to the six month interval and we’ve seen what happens in Israel when there was a much shorter timeframe between the first and second dose which meant that they did see their their rates go up.
“So that six month interval is is what the scientists are advising they have allowed a certain degree of of movements around that six months period but we are working through the people who need that booster jabs on a very priority order which is different from the way they’re doing it in England, which is a little bit more of a free for all where everybody’s invited.
“We think it’s important to vaccinate the most vulnerable and that’s where we’re going in that order.”
Asked about possible ‘gaps’ in vaccinations for 12 to 16 year olds the Minister replied, “We know that 12 to 15 year olds have been given that invitation about 48% of them have taken up that opportunity. We’d obviously like that figure to increase. There are opportunities and lots of people took up that opportunity over half term, but we would encourage parents and children to come forward thought for that vaccination.
“We have seen the rates decline in our schools and we’re so we’re really pleased to see that happening. And we do think that the vaccination is helping in that space. So I’m not aware that there are gaps in terms of the offer to 12 to 15 year olds.”
You can view the full briefing below…
Live now with the Minister for Health and Social Services | Yn fyw gyda’r Gweinidog Iechyd a Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol https://t.co/jLSMYg1FI9
— Welsh Government #KeepWalesSafe (@WelshGovernment) November 9, 2021
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