Welsh Government ‘considering second firebreak and tier system’ to curb rising cases

Mark Drakeford the First Minister of Wales. Picture by the Welsh Government

The Welsh Government is said to be considering a second firebreak lockdown from 28 December.

LBC said a Welsh Government source had informed them that the matter would be discussed by the Cabinet today.

They also suggested that Wales will then move to a four-tier system that will be reviewed every three weeks.

After an all-Wales firebreak, the new tier system would be:

  1. Low risk, under 50 cases per 100,000, equivalent to the situation we had in the summer.
  2. Medium risk, 50-150 cases per 100,000, equivalent to the situation we had post-firebreak.
  3. High risk, 150-300 cases per 100,000, equivalent to the situation we have now.
  4. Very high risk, over 300 cases per 100,000, equivalent to a full lockdown.

Over the last seven days the Wales average is 380 per 100,000 people, with a test positivity rate of 17%. The R rate across Wales has increased to 1.27 with a doubling time of just 11.7 days.

The number of Covid patients in hospital in Wales today was the highest yet recorded. There were 1,936 Covid-19 patients in hospital beds on Wednesday, this was 153 more patients than the week before – according to the latest NHS Wales figures.

Welsh Conservative Health Spokesperson Andrew RT Davies reacted to the news of a possible second firebreak lockdown: “The Welsh Labour Government has lost complete control.

“Sources should stop feeding such significant information to the media and the First Minister should now make an urgent statement to the people of Wales.”

 

‘Resilient’

Wales’ Chief Medical Officer said yesterday that it was too late to change the Covid-19 rules over Christmas without confusing people, but that further restrictions beyond that were possible.

“We will really have to look very carefully, as we come out of that period over Christmas, what the rates are, what the hospital activity is looking like, and how resilient we are as a nation, and we will have to decide about whether we need further restrictions beyond the Christmas period,” he said.

Welsh Government education minister Kirsty Williams said earlier that all of the country’s secondary schools should close at the end of lessons tomorrow and move to online learning from Monday.

Wales previously went into a 17-day national firebreak lockdown from 23 October and into early November.

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