List of Welsh Government COVID-19 press conference videos

From EverybodyWiki Bios & Wiki

Daily briefings (later referred to as 'press conferences') were set up by Welsh Government as a way of dispersing new information to the people of Wales regarding the COVID-19 pandemic in Wales. In October 2020, the Government, as a response to a request from Wikimedia UK, placed these videos, on an open Creative Commons licence, as well as the OGL licence. As health is devolved, all matters relating to Wales are decided upon by the Senedd of the Welsh Government. The following is a chronological list of Welsh Government Covid-19 announcements:[1]

Uploaded videos
Date Video  file name Government Ministers Some of the main points
- - - -
09.12.2020 Frank Atherton,
Chief Medical Officer of Wales
We're in a very serious situation; it's happening quicker than anticipated. All-Wales figures: 21 / 22 local authorities rising; almost 350 per 100,000 people affected; in 10 areas the rate is > 400. It's affecting all age groups. Serious pressures on the NHS: hospitals, ambulances and intensive care. Yesterday, > 1800 Coronavirus related cases in hospitals; 1100 confirmed cases. 77 patience in intensive care (a decrease on yesterday). Good news: yesterday we started vaccinating almost 1500 people. We don't know how long the vaccination lasts. Relaxation of rules over 5 day period (joint 4-nation decision). Personally, I won't be going to any pubs or restaurants or visit any of my children or family.
07.12.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Impact on NHS. The situation is very serious; health service is under considerable and sustained pressure, due to the numbers being admitted to hospitals. Per 100,000 people, (7-day incidence rate) the rates of infection are: all-Wales rate is 70 points higher than Friday. There are local authorities with > 400 cases, and > 500 in Blaenau Gwent and > 600 in Neath Port Talbot. There is today a record numbers in hospitals. >1800 Coronavirus related patients in hospitals; highest number ever recorded; 400 more than the peak in April. Almost 1000 confirmed cases; a quarter will be in hospitals for over 3 weeks. We strengthened our restrictions on Friday. We may need to take further actions to reduce the infection rate. The Health service has more working staff than at any other period in history. Payments to those with Coronavirus. Conservatives this week are asking us to lift the restrictions.

Vaccination: discussions happening on care homes. Brexit: medication - arrangements, much by UK Gov, expecting to fly them in. It's a hugely unwelcome distraction in the NHS. Schools: closing schools causes real harm to children.

04.12.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
We have plans to begin vaccinating from Tuesday of next week. However, the position today is very serious. 2/3 of our local authorities have 7-day incidence rate of 150 cases per 100,000 people. In two places, that number is over 400 cases. Rates are rising. % of positive tests increasing. R number = between 1 and 1.1. Record number of Coronavirus patients in hospital; NHS Wales under sustained pressure: ambulances now at a critical level. We must act now: from 6.00 pm restrictions will apply: no alcohol will be served after 6.00pm. We are providing a £340 million package for businesses. Health and social care staff will now have rapid testing twice a week. We have agreed that over Christmas, those living alone will be allowed to have a single carer / family member in addition to the 3 households coming together, here in wales. We strongly advise people not to travel to England or overseas.
02.12.2020 Dr Frank Atherton
Dr Gill Richardson.
Dr Frank Atherton, Chief Medical Officer and Dr Gill Richardson, Chair of Covid-19 Vaccine Programme Board. Pandemic: wide circulation of the virus; just over 1500 new cases yesterday, and we had 51 further deaths. Rate of transmission, in all health boards increasing. Fire-break was successful, but the rate of spread has now crept up: from 160 cases per 100,000 people to 226. Hence the new restrictions as of Friday.

Vaccines: normally takes 10 years to produce a vaccine. There are currently 4 vaccines under consideration by us: 1) Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech SE, 2) Moderna and 3) Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine. A fourth is being trialed at Phase 3 in Cardiff and a 5th is recruiting participants in the North. The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine has been approved for use in the UK and will need to be stored at ultra low temperatures (under -70C). UK Government has ordered 10s of millions of the Pfizer/BioNTech and the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, and we will be offering these, initially, to first line workers, the over 80s and then care homes. Potential side effects: sore arm, raised temperature; from the studies serious side effects are rare.[2]

30.11.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Further restrictions: hospitality. Unless we act now, the scientific and medical advice is that the numbers in hospital by 12 January could rise to 2,200, and 1,000 - 1,700 preventable deaths could occur over the winter period. On Friday, the 7-day incidence rate was 187 cases per 100,000 people; today it is almost 210 cases. Over the weekend, the cabinet agreed with the following measures, which come into effect 6pm on Friday 6 January. Bars, pubs, restaurants will close by 6pm and will not be allowed to serve alcohol. Also indoor entertainment venues such as cinemas, bowling alleys, bingo halls, amusements arcades etc. + museums, galleries will close; outdoor attractions can remain open. No changes to any other regulations e.g. travel, number of households you can meet. Cross-border travel still not allowed for leisure. Welsh Government will provide £180 million assistance specifically for tourist, leisure and hospitality businesses; that is in addition to financial support by the UK Government. Grants linked to the numbers employed, available through Business Wales.[3]
27.11.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Over the last 7 days we have seen the Coronavirus rise again. There was a steep fall in cases after at the end of the Firebreak. 187 cases per 100,000 of the population, rising. The R number has now risen from under 1 to around 1.4; the ground we gained is being eroded. The hospitals are under sustained pressure. Christmas: relaxing the restrictions will happen, with 3 families allowed to meet. We now need to use the coming weeks to reduce the spread of Coronavius: targeted action, not a national lockdown. We will build upon SAGE advice. Cinemas and other venues will close. Hospitality - measures will come into force from next week. There will be a major financial package to the hospitality industry. The arrangements will be nationally. Non-essential retail: hairdressers, gyms, leisure centers etc. will continue to operate, as now. Hospitality: Welsh Government will discuss over the weekend whether places close at 6.00pm. UCAC has called for schools to close on 11 December; however it is important for schools to work right up to Christmas.

Pubs: we've always had a different system in Wales. In lots of places in England, pubs are closed completely. We in Wales serve alcohol up to 10.00pm.[4]

23.11.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Overall the 7-day incidence is 175 cases per 100,000 people. Rate for Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilli and Newport has risen. Over 25 year olds have also risen (see slide); it fell over the firebreak, but has now started to increase; however, the over 75s age group is falling. Merthyr Tydfil is a pilot for Coronavirus testing. Care homes - just under half of care homes have not reported any incidences. Around 225 million ppi items have been handed to social care since March + extra funding, staffing, funding... Today we're announcing 1) tests (similar to the ones in Merthyr Tydfil) with results in 20 minutes 2) providing more space for visits (pods) to homes, worth £3 million. We are discussing household mixing, in advance of Christmas, similar to Scotland.
20.11.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Impact of the Firebreak. Slide shows how quickly the Coronavirus has fallen. 7-day case incidence has fallen to 160 cases per 100,000 people. Blaenau Gwent is now the highest in Wales. Merthyr has fallen from 770 to 250 cases per 100,000. Our fist mass testing in Merthyr will start over this weekend. R number a week ago was between 0.9 and 1.2. Number of people with Coronavirus has fallen 40% since the beginning of the Firebreak. Rate of hospital admissions with Coronavirus is stable; > 50 hospital wards full of Coronavirus. Deaths: NOS - 3,100 deaths this year. Christmas: all 4 nations working on a plan. In Wales, we plan first and announce the plans second.

The Chancellor is looking at freezing public sector pay to pay for the pandemic: I hope this is not true. Costs should not be placed on e.g. teachers and is wrong. Freeze on wages means that these people would not therefore spend money and thus stimulate the economy. If this happens, we will face very difficult dilemmas, but they will be dilemmas of the UK Governments making. My message to the Chancellor is: don't go down that path.

18.11.2020 Andrew Goodall,
Yesterday, Public Health Wales reported 705 new cases of Coronavirus. Overall, we're seeing a fall in the rate, since the end of the Firebreak. Over the last month, there were 532 deaths. We have 4 levels of escalation in the NHS; today 18 hospitals are reporting levels 3 and 4 - the highest levels of pressure. Hospital admission: 1,654 COVID related patients: 8% higher than last week. 62 people in critical care: lower than a week ago. 25% of those admitted with COVID-19 will be still in hospital in 21 days or more. The NHS remains open for essential treatment and emergencies, and routine care. Outpatients numbers are a third lower than their normal level; waiting lists are increasing.

First mass testing in Wales will be in Merthyr Tydfil over the weekend. R rate = between 0.9 and 1.2.

16.11.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Downward trend continues; 7-day incidence rate is 160 cases per 100,000 people. Merthyr Tydfil: rate has halved. Mass testing has only been available since the summer. In the first 2 weeks of November Public Health Wales have recorded more than 250 deaths from Coronavirus. This is why we're taking action. Difference between COVID-19 and flu. > 1.3 million people across the world have died. We still don't know if people can be immune. Death rate is much higher than flu. Care homes: Lighthouse Labs - an improvement; we also use our own labs, and free PPI is guaranteed to care homes.
13.11.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
No reduction in the percentage of people dying of Coronavius: number of cases were rising until the last few days. 170 cases per 100,000. Ceredigion cases numbers rising, due to a care home. Too early to see the impact of the Firebreak. Contact tracing is organised by us in Wales: service is locally run, and we have contacted 9 out of 10 contacts received from people who have been infected. Announcing today a new surge team, and £15.7 million for this; 1,300 contact tracers and advisers to identify new hotspots and contact infected people.

There are examples whereby the initial positive test by Lighthouse Labs (UK based) have been overturned by Public Health Wales' 2nd test, and this happens at a level well above the level recommended by Welsh Government technical advisers. We do regularly take up issues on false positives with the UK Dept of Health regarding accuracy of the tests run by the Lighthouse Labs programme. Accuracy is very important.[5]

11.11.2020 Kirsty Williams,
Education Minister
No end of year exams, instead there will be teacher managed assessments. Universities: we have agreed that students will be able to return home at the end of the term, for Christmas break. We are arranging mass testing of students and staff at our universities. If you have symptoms, or have been asked to do so, don't travel. Students studying out of Wales will also be allowed to return home.
9.11.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Over the weekend new quarantine rules have been introduced for people coming in from Denmark, following the discovery of a new, mutated strain of COVID-19 in mink. Firebreak has been 17 days, and difficult for everyone. We have further strengthened our test, trace, protect by supporting our local teams and opening our 3 Welsh laboratories. We have brought forward our field hospital capacities in Ysbyty Seren in Cwm Taf Morgannwg, Ysbyty Selwyn in Carmarthenshire, the Deeside Field hospital and the Grange University will open on 17 December. There are early signs that numbers of people are staying at home, and the number of cases has fallen down from 250 cases per 100,000 to just 220 cases. Hospital admissions >1,400 - which is higher than in April. From today, national restrictions will replace the firebreak restrictions, and these will be reviewed in 2 weeks.

Other governments: Cabinet Office have said that they would like weekly engagements with us. As Firebreak comes to an end, targeted action / local restrictions are possible in the future, working with local health teams. TTP: contact tracing: 38% testing are done in 24 hours. Further investment will be announced later this week. The Conservative party has voted against the Regulations; very odd to hear them now calling for further restrictions.[6]

6.11.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
We're about to start the final weekend of out Firebreak period. Latest info: 1,272 new confirmed cases (PHW). NOS survey suggests that 1 person out of 110 had Coronavirus (CV) in the last week in October. High rates in Merthyr Tydfil, Rhondda Cynnon Taf and Blaenau Gwent. 252 cases per 100,000 people. This week NHS admissions past the April peak point: the numbers by now have fallen slightly. Currently 1,365 people with CV in hospitals - 169 higher than last week. Our NHS, however, is not overwhelmed.

Test, trace and protect (NHS Wales) - national surge team, deployed when numbers rise sharply. Also we're releasing the £500 self isolation payments and piloting new testing technology. 39% testing done in 24 hours; 90% of our testing is done in 48 hours. We are still not satisfied with the Lighthouse testing and will continue to do our own Public Health Wales testing.

5.11.2020 Ken Skates,
Economy Minister
The Welsh Government's Support Package for Businesses is the most generous anywhere in the UK, and worth more than 1.7 billion pounds. Our economic Resilience fund has helped 17,000 businesses across Wales and has helped to protect more than 100,000 jobs: phase 3 (worth £300 million) started last week. Details on other funds available by Welsh Government e.g. to individuals. Furlough is now available until March 2021.
4.11.2020 Eluned Morgan,
Minister for Mental Health and Wellbeing
1200 additional cases today. Public Health Wales today: 44 new deaths. In Wales, we spend more on mental health than on any other aspect of the NHS: £700 million per year. 67% tests go through Loughthouse Labs which have not been as successful as the NHS Wales approach to testing. Our test, track and trace are also significantly better than England.
3.11.2020 Andrew Goodall,
How Coronavirus is effecting the NHS. Today: 1,275 Covid related patience in hospitals: the highest since April. There are 57 people in critical care units. 16,000 have been admitted to hospitals with CV. Rates highest in Cwm Taf. Non-CV patients are now being admitted. Day care admission in September increased by 160% as compared with April. Out patients higher. Primary care services in GP practices and pharmacies have been open all year round. 300,000 people since March have seen their dentist.
2.11.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Unexpected lockdown announcement by the Prime Minister yesterday. The English lockdown has an impact on Wales; we will be coming out of our firebreak as England begins its month long lockdown. It's really important that Wales doesn't become an escape by people seeking to circumvent the new tighter restrictions imposed by the PM, in England. When the fire break comes to an end on the 9th, there will be restrictions in place. We need to do the minimum, not the maximum possible. From the 9th Nov, two households will be able to join together in a bubble. Up to 15 people will be able to take part indoors, and 30 outdoors. Schools will reopen in full and all business premises will reopen. There will be no travel restrictions within Wales, but there will be travel restrictions from outside Wales. We have over 1000 beds in hospitals.

Furlough: unfair that when we asked for flexible... it wasn't possible, yet when England went into lockdown, that flexibility was found. The Treasury is the treasury for the whole of the United kingdom, and not just one part of it. Travel for work is acceptable if essential over the border. Visitors in England can not travel to Wales, as the measures in England do not allow them to come to Wales.

26.10.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Today we start the first full week of the firebreak period here in Wales. This weekend has been dominated by what can and what can't be sold in supermarkets. One supermarket told a woman that she couldn't buy period products; this is simply wrong! Supermarkets can sell the everyday items that we need, but there are some items not to be sold for the next two weeks. These are items that high street shops, currently closed, can not sell at the moment.

There have been 43,000 cases of Coronavirus since the start of the pandemic in March. Last week 60 people died. We have the highest number of people in hospitals with Coronavirus since June.

23.10.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
This evening we will begin the 2 week firebreak period (Welsh: "Clo Bach"). The law requires everyone to stay at home and work from home where possible. All nonessential shops, leisure, hospitality and tourism are shut. Number of deaths: 45 this week. The number in hospital has doubled since the start of this month. There are 47 people in critical care, which has doubled in one week. This week, we've held a press briefing every day. The UK Treasury: yet to see a reply from the UK Chancellor. We shall take measures today to help people during the firebreak period, as no reply has been received, with Welsh money.
22.10.20 Kirsty Williams,
Education Minister
Thursday. Firebreak comes in tomorrow and will have an impact on education. Primary and special schools will open as normal, as will years 7 and 8 in secondary schools. Others, as well as students, will work from home. School attendance = constant at 87%. Confirmed cases at schools: 74% with no cases. We are gathering information on annual exams, and will provide an update on 10 November. We are looking at options which will allow students in other countries of the UK to return home.
21.10.20 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Latest figures: 895 Covid related cases, that's up 26% from same time last week - highest since June; 43 in critical care - 72% higher since last week. Virus is moving from younger age group to older age group. R number = between 1.1 and 1.4. Firebreak will start this Friday. Hospital infections. Staff test results in care homes - some are taking two weeks to come back - this is due to failures in the UK Lighthouse Labs; we are therefore doing our own (Public Health Wales) tests. Only 50% of care homes have faith in the Government.
20.10.20 Ken Skates,
Economy Minister
Economic measures to help businesses. The First Minister has written again to the Chancellor to asking him to pay furlough over this lockdown period in Wales. HMRC will not share their data with us, so we can not administer or give money, instead of the UK Government. Businesses will therefore need to apply to for different grants, rather than our suggestion: one grant.
19.10.20 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Monday. We have held discussions over the weekend, as virus spreads rapidly across Wales. If we don't act, our NHS could be overwhelmed and more people would die. Decision is to introduce a 2-week firebreak period starting at 6pm Friday this week, and will include the half term and end on the 9th November. Between Friday 23 October and 9th Nov, everyone in Wales will be required to stay at home: working from home, unless you are critical workers. All tourism businesses, non-essential retail, places of worship, recycling centres, libraries etc. will close. Childcare, primary Schools and Year 7 and 8 secondary schools will remain open; other students to work from home. Students to stay in their uni accommodation. No gatherings with people you don't live with, other than single parents and people who live alone.

There will be a financial package to support businesses; we've created an extra fund of almost £300million. The £80million announced last week to increase to £100 million. I wrote to the Chancellor on Friday to ask him to give businesses early access to the newly expanded job support scheme from Friday of this week.

Critical workers will be allowed to cross the border with England. Visitors{ evidence does show that people traveling bring in Coronavirus. We therefore ask people not to travel into Wales.[7]

16.10.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
In just a few weeks Coronavirus has spread to all parts of Wales. We are facing a very serious situation. Th R number is 1.4 and c. 2500 people are getting infected every day. We are still in a better place in Wales than any other part of the UK. Yesterday we had 800 people in hospitals with CV. We are looking at introducing a time limited 'fire break', also known as a 'circuit breaker'. This could slow down the spread. A short, sharp, shock to the virus. We are considering a two or three week fire break. We will report the outcome of our discussions on Monday. Doing nothing is not an option.

Cross border travel: I received a letter from the PM (Boris Johnson): he does not agree that people shouldn't travel to Wales. The fewer journeys we make, the safer we are. Keeping schools is a top priority. Testing by UK Lighthouse Labs: results take 4 days: equipment falls down etc. We saw an improvement in volume of tests last week. But turnaround times need to be improved.[8]

12.10.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
We have seen Coronavirus move from East to West across the UK and from E to W across Wales. We have local measures in place, but these are not enough; this week we expect stronger measures in England. This morning the First Minister and myself joined the UK Cobra meeting. We potentially face a very difficult month ahead of us. The R number is estimated to be 1.3. The NHS estimates that 1/500 people have CV. There are > 330 in hospital with CV - 100 more than the previous week. CV has had more impact in low income bands. Welsh care homes (4th Oct): 127 cases in staff in over 1000 care homes.

We are considering a national lockdown: possibly a fire break. The First Minister and myself are very disappointed that the PM is still only giving guidance as to whether people in highly infected areas can travel across the border to Wales. We do understand that there has been infestation from England. It doesn't appear to be that there is a resolution on this with England, which would have been the right choice to make... Sadly the Prime Minister has chosen not to act. We did not get clarity this morning in the Cobra meeting that metrics are used how people move from one tier / level to another in England's traffic light system. Advice we're receiving from our own Chief Medical Officer is that the 3 tier traffic light system will not be enough to bring the R number below 1.

Welsh ministers will meet later on today to have legal advice; we do have public health powers. I'm disappointed that we haven't had a more definitive response from England on travel, as we know that travel does carry Coronavirus.

9.10.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Mental health and well-being. Now we allow children to take part in organised sports if these are outside their county boundaries. The numbers are: those admitted to hospitals are up, as well as the number dying. We can not yet relax restrictions. Awaiting to hear from the Treasury of the UK Gov that they will support those areas in Wales under lockdown. Our aim is to find out what is driving the numbers; where hospitality is the cause, then we will take action. We are collecting the number of cases from many places.

Q "This week the president of the USA retweeted criticism of the welsh government's approach with regards to lockdowns. Reaction?" A: "He said that If Biden was elected, then many people would be delighted, they had our levels of Coronavirus, if they had the health servies we have here etc..."

"In many parts of the UK, things are getting worse. We are told that on Monday the UK Government will tighten restrictions in England, where the levels of the virus are higher than anywhere in Wales." People in English hotspots can still come over to Wales: when will that change? Yet to receive a response to my letter to the Prime Minister, which is very disappointing. We are preparing what action we will take; we shall wait to hear from UK Gov. We have the powers to stop people coming into Wales.[9]

6.10.2020 Frank Atherton, CMO Frank Atherton,
Chief Medical Officer of Wales. August: 2- 30 cases; yesterday we had 752. There is more testing, but also more transmission; that's why there are restrictions in 15 local authorities and Llanelli for the last 4 weeks. Some evidence that the restrictions are improving the picture. The resurgence of the virus was mainly in the younger generation.
5.10.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Over the last month Coronavirus has increased significantly. We have introduced new measures. Video by Sail databank, Swansea University. End of August: hardly any Coronavirus: as month goes on, CV spreads quickly, first south, then north. 8 out of 10 schools have not had the virus since start of Autumn term. General tips on how to avoid CV.

"The reason we asked UK Government to introduce travel restrictions is because we do know that travel does bring additional risks. We know that if people from Liverpool come (to Wales) and mix, in the same pub... We have quarantine restrictions for other countries, and we are considering the next steps."

2.10.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
For the 1st time since April: no major changes to the National regulations. 1 change regarding local restrictions: this is in order to prevent loneliness. We will now allow people who live alone to join up with one other household to create a temp bubble.

Cases have risen sharply since August. 350 new cases; 66 admitted to hospital and 21 in intensive care; after weeks of falling deaths, yesterday 6 deaths were reported. 66,500 tests in last week of September; signs last week that the Lighthouse Labs system is improving. 9 out of 10 are being traced and contacted.

Regarding my letter to the Prime Minister of the UK Government: "I've not had a reply to my letter... all I'm asking for is to put in place in England the rule we already have in Wales. If you're living in a restricted area in Wales, you can't travel to an area where Coronavirus remains low... and yet you can travel from an area in England where the figures are higher than any parts of Wales. I don't think that is sensible; and I've asked the Prime Minister to implement in England the same rule that we have here in Wales.

30.09.2020 Kirsty Williams,
Education Minister
Appeal to students not to meet outdoors (other than immediate household) or go out of the local authority area without a good reason. If you have symptoms, you must self isolate; don't go back home. Schools opened a month ago. Attendance constant at around 80%. Number of schools which have reported cases of COVID-19: 12,000 had no cases, 183 had 1 case, 47 had 2 cases and 22 had 3 or more cases.
28.09.2020 Ken Skates,
Economy Minister
We have secured more than 100,000 jobs through the first two phases, through the Economic Resilience Fund. Between Welsh Government direct support and the Development Bank of Wales we've come to the aid of 14,000 businesses. With local authority partners we've made >64,000 awards, providing almost £770 million support. We've pressed the UK Government to continue the furlough scheme. Last week the UK Chancellor listened to us. Today, a further £140 m to support businesses in Wales. Today we have 9 local authorities under restrictions will increase to 12.
25.09.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
As from last night, all licensed places without table service (food) must stop serving alcohol at 10.00pm throughout Wales. Caerphilly was the first area to be placed under local restrictions: there, levels of Coronavius have fallen steadily, but as with Rhondda Cynon Taf, restrictions will remain. Llanelli is high, as is Swansea; there appear to be links with close household / family contacts. Also a steady increase in Cardiff and Glamorgan. Local restrictions will therefore be at Cardiff, Swansea and Llanelli. Cases in north Wales are much lower than the south. A new testing area has opened in Trefforest. Everyone must work at home, where possible.

The UK Government will not financially support places under restrictions in Wales. The app was rolled our across Wales and England yesterday. 50% of Wales is now under local restrictions. Students to be allowed into colleges from next week. Holidaying is not a reasonable excuse to travel.[10]

23.09.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
Pubs, restaurants and other venues to stop serving alcohol at 11.00pm. Only 6 people (extended household) can meet indoors. Child care is a 'reasonable' reason to travel. No specific number, just like funerals. Now under lockdown, we are considering shielding. We have take a cautious approach here in Wales. So far, no evidence that visitors bring in the virus.[11]
21.09.2020 Vaughan Gething, Health Minister Updated info on Caerphilly County Burrough and Rhondda Cynon Taf. There has been, despite measures by local authorities, a rapid increase in Coronavirus in 4 other areas from 6.00pm on Tuesday in Bridgend, Blaenau Gwent, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport. Local restrictions will therefore be introduced: no traveling, unless for work or education. Only meet outdoors; no extended households. All pubs to close at 11.00pm.
18.09.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
This has been a sobering week as the Coronavirus has worsened across Wales. New restrictions came into force last night in the Rhondda Cynon Taf authority. Newport and Merthyr Tydfil under close watch. Position across Wales is complex, but rising. The R number is between 0.7 and 1.2. We're testing >9,500 people every day but the speed of the results is hampered by the well publicised problems caused by the UK Lighthouse Labs system. After many days with no deaths, Public Health wales yesterday reported 3 deaths due to Coronavirus. Today, Wrexham has a very low number of cases.

Numerous problems with UK wide testing system. "All these issues need to be discussed by the 4 governments working together. As far too often in this crisis that opportunity has not been there. Once again, I repeat my calls to the Prime Minister for proper engagement with the devolved Governments of the UK. In this most difficult week, there has been no meeting offered of any sort. Since the 28th of May, months ago now, there has been just one brief telephone call from the Prime Minister. I think that that is simply unacceptable... We need a regular, reliable rhythm of engagement... There is a vacancy at the heart of the United Kingdom."

"Very often we don't know what the word 'national' means in when used by the UK Government, to my reading of it they mean 'England' in that context." And some of the things they are contemplating, we are already doing on a national basis here in Wales.

14.09.2020 Vaughan Gething,
Health Minister
Due to BBC cuts, briefings will now happen 3 times a week. Parts of Wales which are of concern: restrictions were introduced at Caerphilly last week; other places of concern include Merthyr Tudfil, Rhondda Cynnon Taf, Newport. We know of cases from holiday travel. Cases are rising, overall: pattern is similar to that in early February. Either we take action now or we face full lockdown. From today face coverings must be worn in all public places; only six people from one extended home to meet indoors. Ongoing issues by Lighthouse Labs (UK Gov testing) and came to an end over this weekend. There are other issues at UK testing therefore we are using Welsh labs.

See also briefing of 11 September [12]

31.7.2020 Mark Drakeford,
First Minister
The virus continues to be in decline in Wales; step by step, cautiously we can begin lifting the lockdown. For the next 3 weeks we shall relax restrictions on people meeting. (Following an earlier brieing on 10 July,)[13] From Monday, pubs, bars, venues will be able to reopen; distancing remains at 2 meter distance. Swimming pools, leisure centers and children's playgrounds will reopen. Indoors - half the cases in July were linked to indoor contacts. So, we are moving into the green light of our traffic light system. We will take action to enforce the legal requirements, when people's behavior becomes a threat to people's health. We are working with our local authorities to enhance their powers to ensure that premises comply with the rules and requirements. My advice to those traveling over the border is to make sure they abide by the guidance we have in Wales. In Wales, we plan first and announce second.
03.06.2020 Kirsty Williams,
Education Minister
It is now 77 days since we closed our schools. Schools will reopen 29 June. There will be a phased return, with around a 1/3rd pupils present at any one time. It will prepare pupils and staff for the new normal in September. Teachers will be a new group in our antibody testing. It will be a chance for pupils to prepare for the Summer holiday, and for September; this will support online learning.[14]
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  12. Live Covid-19: Welsh Government update "it is not inevitable things will worsen further" 11 October 2020,, accessed 10 December 2020
  13. Coronavirus: Welsh pubs and cafes to reopen indoors on 3 August 10 July 2020,, accessed 10 December 2020
  14. Live Coronavirus in Wales: Updates on Wednesday 3 June, accessed 9 December 2020

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