Delta variant cases to peak next month and deaths in August, says Drakeford
Cases of the Delta variant in Wales are expected to peak at the end of next month, and hospitalisations and deaths in August, the First Minister has said.
He said the modelling by Swansea University had turned out to be “remarkably reliable”. According to their model June and August would see 900 extra hospital admissions as a result of the Delta variant, he said.
There was some uncertainty about how effective the vaccine was against the Delta variant and how transmissible it was, so things could be better or worse, he said.
However, Mark Drakeford said that cases were rising much faster among under 25s compared to older age groups – among seven times higher in Flintshire. He said this suggested they were seeing the positive impact of the vaccination programme.
“That’s why we’re focusing on ensuring that as many people as possible have two doses of the vaccine during the four weeks in which we have paused relaxing restrictions,” he said.
He said that social mixing was also greater among younger people. Responding to a question about whether football had played a part, he said that it would not be surprising to find that some of the same things driving the rise in cases in Scotland.
Mark Drakeford added that since last week the Delta variant has “continued to spread quickly” and is “spreading freely in communities right across Wales,” with a doubling to 1100 cases now recorded. 15 people have been admitted to hospital with Delta variant in Wales.
“Fortunately these numbers remain low at the moment, but we have to be prepared to see them rise just as they have in England and Scotland,” he said.
“If we see similar growth here in Wales then our services will come under pressure here once again.”
Across Wales, there are 37 cases per 100,000 people, and in the north of Wales, four out of six local authorities have over 50 cases per 100,000.