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Covid: Delta variant cases soar in Wales

MORE than 200 new cases of the Delta variant have been confirmed in Wales in the last week.

The latest figures from Public Health Wales show 209 new Delta variant cases across the country in the week up to June 22.

That takes the total number of Delta cases in Wales to 788.

By comparison, there were just 10 new cases of the Alpha variant, previously known as the Kent variant, in that time period.

The release of the figures comes on the day Wales recorded its highest number of cases on a single day since February.

There were 438 new cases of coronavirus confirmed today across Wales.

And the rolling weekly case rate in Wales – to June 19, the latest available – is 35.6 cases per 100,000 people, almost five times that of three weeks earlier.

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At Monday’s coronavirus briefing, health minister Eluned Morgan reiterated that some lockdown easing had been pushed back because of the “serious situation” Wales was facing with the Delta variant.

Dr Chris Jones, deputy chief medical officer for Wales, said at that time that four out of five new cases in Wales were caused by the Delta variant.

Dr Jones said he was unaware whether an increase of Delta variant cases would lead to an increase in hospitalisations.

He added: “The increase in the Delta variant is driving the increase in coronavirus rates.

“Four out of five new cases are caused by the Delta variant.

“Based on the experience seen in Scotland, the risk of being admitted to hospital because of the Delta variant, if you are not vaccinated, appears to be at least double.

“Vaccination appears to offer strong protection against disease, and there is good emerging evidence that two doses reduces the risk of hospitalisation.”

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