A FURTHER 145 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in the Hywel Dda area, according to Monday’s (January 11) Public Health Wales.
The latest figures show 91 new cases in Carmarthenshire out of 587 tests, 39 new cases in Pembrokeshire from 457 tests and 15 from 120 tests in Ceredigion.
In Wales, 1,793 new cases have been confirmed and 17 new deaths have also been reported by Public Health Wales.
The total number of cases across the three counties now totals 12,585 – 8,620 in Carmarthenshire, 2,554 in Pembrokeshire and 1,411 in Ceredigion.
Four more deaths have been confirmed in the Hywel Dda area, taking the total number to 284 throughout the pandemic.
There have been 16,721 tests carried out since the last report.
Across Wales 86,039 have received a first dose course of covid-19 vaccine and 79 the second dose, with PHW adding that these figures are a daily snapshot and data entry a time of reporting is incomplete so the number vaccinated will be higher.
In Hywel Dda, the health board has administered 7,814 vaccine doses as of the week ending January 3.
Dr Giri Shankar, Incident Director for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak response at Public Health Wales, said:
“The number of positive Coronavirus cases remains extremely high in Wales and is cause for serious concern.
“All of Wales remains in lockdown. We ask that the public adopts the same mindset for this lockdown as they did in March 2020. We understand that people are fatigued but with a more transmissible variant of coronavirus circulating across Wales, it is vital that we all keep to the lockdown restrictions in place.
“This means to stay at home, exercise outdoors alone or with members of your household or support bubble and if possible, only once a day. Shop online but if you must visit shops do this alone.
“The Education Minister has announced that all schools and colleges will continue with online learning until at least 29 January, and will remain that way until the February half term unless there is a significant reduction in transmission.
“In addition, the Welsh Government have confirmed that non-essential retail, hospitality venues, licensed premises and leisure facilities will remain closed. Measures in shops and workplaces which remain open will be strengthened, including closing all showrooms, although they will still be able to operate click and collect services.
“The roll-out of the Pfizer BioNTech and AstraZeneca Coronavirus vaccines continues in Wales with the recently Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) approved Moderna vaccine to be incorporated into the programme soon.
“From today, daily vaccination data will be published on the Public Health Wales dashboard. Public Health Wales is working closely with the Welsh Government as they deploy Coronavirus vaccinations through local health boards. Welsh Government is leading on the deployment of the vaccine in Wales.”
“Vaccinating the adult population of Wales, to protect people from severe disease, is a significant task, and the vaccine will take time to reach everyone. The epidemiology of COVID-19 throughout the UK in late 2020 showed a clear need for rapid, high levels of vaccine uptake among vulnerable persons.
“The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has issued a short <a href=”https://phw.nhs.wales/topics/immunisation-and-vaccines/covid-19-vaccination-information/resources-for-health-and-social-care-professionals/first-does-priority/”>statement</a> outlining the case for optimising the existing vaccine programme within the UK to achieve maximum short term impact. The JCVI advises initially prioritising the delivery of the first vaccine dose as this is highly likely to have a greater public health impact in the short term and reduce the number of preventable deaths from COVID-19.
“Given the data available, and evidence from the use of many other vaccines, Public Health Wales fully supports the JCVI advice to increase a maximum interval between the first and second doses of 12 weeks for both Pfizer BioNTech and AstraZeneca vaccines.
“Members of the public should not phone your GP, pharmacy or hospital asking when they will get a vaccine. When someone is in one of the groups eligible for the vaccine, they will be invited to attend a dedicated clinic which will have been set up to ensure patient safety and that of the healthcare professionals.
“The effects of the vaccines may not be seen nationally for some time, and with Wales at alert level four, we must continue to follow the advice on keeping Wales safe. Stay at home, meet only the people you live with, maintain social distancing, wash your hands regularly, and work from home if you can.
“If you or a member of your household develop a cough, fever or change in sense of taste or smell, you must self-isolate immediately and book a free Coronavirus test, either by calling 119 or <a href=”https://www.merthyr.gov.uk/resident/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-centres/drive-through-coronavirus-testing-centre/”>by clicking here</a>.
“If you are due to travel out of the UK, please be aware of the changing situation and keep an eye on the <a href=”https://www.gov.uk/guidance/travel-advice-novel-coronavirus”>FCO website</a> for up to date details.
“Public Health Wales urges everyone to follow the rules, to avoid transmission of Coronavirus and to protect everyone in our communities, including the most vulnerable.”