Posted: Fri 5th Feb 2021

Nearly 100 more military personnel deployed to Wales to help with vaccine roll out

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Feb 5th, 2021

The number of military personnel supporting the roll-out of Covid-19 vaccine in Wales is to double following a Military Aid to the Civilian Authorities (MACA) request from the Welsh Government.

The MACA will provide an additional 96 service personnel to carry out a range of tasks including up to 20 defence medics who will boost capacity by leading teams of local vaccinators.

As part of the latest request, the additional service personnel will deploy from 6 February and are expected to be on task until the end of April 2021.

Their progress will be reviewed in mid February, which is the target for offering a first dose of the vaccine to the top four priority cohorts.

The review will help UK Government understand the level of demand for the 92 service personnel who have been supporting Welsh Government since early January, and who are expected to complete their duties on 28 February.

Separately, the UK Government has also provided two military planners to Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board in north Wales until mid-March to assist with the planning of the vaccination programme in the area.

Welsh Secretary Simon Hart said: “The vaccines represent the light at the end of the tunnel and their rapid roll-out across the UK will help us regain normality as soon as possible.

“The British Armed Forces are vital in this effort and I’m incredibly thankful for the work they have been carrying out in Wales throughout the pandemic.”

Defence Minister James Heappey said: “I’m proud that the UK Armed Forces and NHS are working so closely together to roll-out the vaccine across the UK. With this deployment we are stepping up our support in Wales, bringing specialist skills to accelerate vaccinations and save lives.”

There are over 5,000 Armed Forces personnel supporting 74 Covid-19 tasks in the UK and abroad, including the vaccine rollout, NHS support and community testing across the UK.

The Armed Forces have provided significant support in Wales throughout the pandemic. As well as assisting the vaccine roll-out, they have supported the Welsh Ambulance Services NHS Trust (WAST) with over 90 ambulance drivers and defence medics.

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