Covid cases in Wales decline for fourth straight week

By nation.cymru

5 months ago

News Health

Covid-19 infections in Wales are continuing to fall, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

In the week ending 16 August, the estimated number of people testing positive for Covid was 65,500, equating to 2.15% of the population, or around 1 in 45 people.

Over the previous week 72,600 people or around 1 in 40 people were estimated to have the virus in Wales.

The latest figures show the number of infections has declined for the last four weeks.

Health experts have warned levels are likely to rise again in the autumn and winter, however.

A new booster jab will be offered to everyone in Wales aged 50 and over from next month, as well as those with underlying health conditions, to increase protection ahead of future waves.

As part of the Welsh Government’s winter respiratory vaccination strategy, people who are eligible for the Covid jab are also being urged to take up the flu vaccine when offered.

In line with advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), eligible adults aged 18 and over will initially be offered the Moderna vaccine which protects from both the original Covid virus and the Omicron variant.

The UK became the first nation to authorise the vaccine, described as “next generation” by experts, when the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) approved it earlier this month.

The MHRA said that the vaccine’s side effects are the same as those seen in the original Moderna booster dose and were typically mild.

Those eligible aged under 18 will be offered the Pfizer vaccine. Both vaccines will be offered at least three months after a previous dose.

Eligible adults will mostly be invited via letter to attend a vaccination centre, GP or pharmacy for their autumn booster vaccination.

Health Minister Eluned Morgan said:

“Vaccines have had an enormous impact on the course of the pandemic and have helped to weaken the link between the virus, serious illness, hospitalisations and death. They have saved countless lives and given us the freedom and confidence to restart our lives.

“I urge anyone who is eligible and invited to have the autumn booster this year to take up the offer and I thank everyone working on the vaccination programme in Wales.”

Health boards are set to administer the flu jab alongside the Covid vaccination where possible to maximise take up and ensure more people are protected this winter.

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