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Wales’ Health Minister slams ‘chaotic scenes’ at English vaccine centres – ‘we plan before we announce’

14 Dec 2021 2 minute read
Health Minister Eluned Morgan

Wales’ Health Minister has slammed what she called the “chaotic scenes” at England’s vaccine centres, saying that the Welsh Government “plan before we announce”.

NHS England’s website crashed yesterday as more than half a million people booked their booster jab on Monday. Large queues also formed at Covid vaccine walk-in centres.

“We do things differently here in Wales,” Eluned Morgan said at today’s press conference. “We plan before we announce to avoid chaotic scenes we have seen in England.”

She added that NHS Wales staff will be asked to cancel leave and work day and night over Christmas to vaccinate hundreds of thousands of people in a matter of weeks.

Everyone would get the booster vaccine before the “peak of the wave reaches us”, but some may not have it by the end of December as three months will not have passed since their third dose, she added.

Eluned Morgan added that Covid vaccination centres would be open from “early in the morning to late at night” in order to ensure that everyone was able to get the vaccine.

“We will be texting or phoning everyone whose number we have to offer them a booster appointment,” she said.

“We will be asking staff to cancel leave and work day and night over Christmas to vaccinate hundreds of thousands of people in a matter of weeks.

“Everyone will get a chance to get the booster vaccine before the peak of the wave reaches us.”


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Jack
Jack
11 months ago

Usually agree with the Welsh Government but not here. They’re urging people to get the booster as a priority but they’re not giving us any opportunity to speed the process up.

Drakeford said that people who have been invited have been missing appointments. Meanwhile, those of us who are uninvited are powerless to do anything about this.

I would gladly queue for 5, 6, 7+ hours if I had to. I just want the booster!

Bronwyn Curnow
Bronwyn Curnow
11 months ago
Reply to  Jack

Queing for up to 7 hours is fine if you are physically capable of standing that long, which I am not. I was quite happy to receive a letter of invitation and turn up for the jabs – all 3 of them. I live in rural mid Wales and I overheard a conversation about slots that were unfilled – they were doing their best to fill with standby people but it could take up to 30 mins for standbys to arrive. We don’t all live in cities or towns where we can simply put on a coat & show up.… Read more »

Jack
Jack
11 months ago
Reply to  Bronwyn Curnow

Mark Drakeford himself said some people are not turning up for their slots & these slots are going to waste. Meanwhile I’ve phoned up vaccination centres all over Cardiff trying to get a slot & keep bring told to wait.

Drakeford says we should be getting the booster as a priority, but we’re being turned away!

j humphrys
j humphrys
11 months ago
Reply to  Jack

If someone fails their slot, you may have 10 mins max to get there?
Unless panicky people hang around, getting in the way…………….

Last edited 11 months ago by j humphrys
Jack
Jack
11 months ago
Reply to  j humphrys

If people were queuing outside the centre (as they are in England) then they could easily find someone in 10 minutes. People aren’t panicking in England, they’re forming an orderly queue.

Why on earth are people in Wales acting as if wanting to get the vaccine is a bad thing?

R W
R W
11 months ago
Reply to  Jack

Surely it makes more sense to get the booster jab to people in the 50+ age category first rather than give it to an 18 year old (who is under far less risk from the virus) first just because he/she has queued up for it?

Jack
Jack
11 months ago
Reply to  R W

The booster programme has been going since the start of October. Why in earth haven’t they had the booster already?

Because the rollout has been slow & people have needlessly missed appointments. That’s why.

R W
R W
11 months ago
Reply to  Jack

I’m in my 50s and haven’t received an appointment yet. I will certainly be going for the jab when I do get a time/location to attend.

Jack
Jack
11 months ago
Reply to  R W

I’m sorry but it’s unacceptable that you haven’t had it already. My parents are in their 50s in England & they both had it at the beginning of November.

The Welsh government have dropped the ball here. There’s nothing wrong with criticising them when they make a mistake.

George
George
11 months ago

It’s a fair point to be made (yesterday was chaos in England and appointment system much better) but this Welsh Government has always had concerns regarding open borders as source of new variants coming in and should have been aware of extra difficulty during winter months so why are they still slow off the mark?

Jack
Jack
11 months ago
Reply to  George

People are defending the Welsh government by saying they’re prioritising the vulnerable by doing it this way.

This is fair enough, but as the booster programme started at the beginning of October, I think it’s legit to ask why the vulnerable hadn’t already had their booster?

Simon
Simon
11 months ago

I think that we are getting the best of both worlds, at least here in Powys. A very good appointment programme for boosters means that everyone over 60 has had chance to get booster with no queueing or uncertainty. This programme will work down ages. In meantime, there are now also drop in booster clinics for anyone over 40.

Powys Health Board link

Planned. And prioritised. Unlike the stop start chaos in England.

Andrew Redman
Andrew Redman
11 months ago

When you are told the situation is a shambles by medical practitioners then you have to question the statement of The Welsh Minister of Health.?

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