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Welsh Government’s latest Covid guidance ahead of Christmas

THE WELSH Government has announced new Covid rules, with the possibility of more restrictions after Christmas.

We’ve rounded-up information on what people ought to know about the current situation in Wales.

What are the new Covid rules?

  • Nightclubs will close after Boxing Day.
  • The two-metre social distancing rule will return on December 27.
  • Shops will have to put in extra measures to protect staff and customers, such as one-way systems and physical barriers (if they don’t still have these in place).
  • More restrictions are likely to be introduced by Welsh Government after Christmas.

Does the closure of nightclubs indicate the Covid Pass is ineffective?

  • Not according to Mark Drakeford; he said that Covid Passes are useful in stopping the spread of Covid but that they are “not sufficient” in nightclubs for the “wave of Omicron” coming our way. Read more here.

What support is there for businesses affected by this announcement?

  • A £60 million support package for businesses affected by the new restrictions has also been announced, but details of how to claim have not yet been announced.
  • According to Mark Drakeford if more money was needed it would have to be done with the help of the UK treasury – he described the current system as unfair.

What is the advice for Christmas?

  • Welsh Government recommend doing a lateral flow test if going shopping or vising people. Health staff have also been advised to take tests before going to work each day.
  • They have also suggested reducing social contact or meeting outdoors when possible – they have added that meetings indoors should be in well ventilated places.
  • Welsh Government has recommended spacing out when socialising and leaving at least one day between events.
  • People are advised to follow Covid regulations such as social distancing, hand washing, and face coverings.
  • People are also being urged by Welsh Government to get their Covid vaccinations or booster jabs.

Can I see my family at Christmas?

  • Yes. The new rules do not put any restrictions on the number of people you can see and where you can meet them.

Will shops reopen after Christmas?

  • The first minister said shops, offices and businesses will reopen in Wales after the Christmas break, but with new protection in place.
  • Immediately after Christmas Welsh Government is drawing in on measures in alert level two.

Which measures are included in alert level two?

  • Social distancing;
  • Face coverings – unless exempt – in all indoor public places;
  • Not meeting with anyone in a private home other than those you live with or your exclusive extended household;
  • Working from home when possible;
  • The rule of six.

Will there be changes to large sporting events?

  • There will be an announcement on Monday (December 20) about whether changes would be needed to allow large sporting events, such as Boxing Day rugby derbies, football matches and the Welsh Grand National in Chepstow, to go ahead.

What is happening with schools?

Why is Welsh Government not introducing more restrictions before Christmas?

  • Welsh Government believes that Delta is the dominant variant in Wales currently, with Omicron numbers reportedly lower in Wales than elsewhere in the UK.
  • However first minister Mark Drakeford has suggested that Omicron – which is reportedly “highly infectious” – may be the most dominant variant in Wales by January 2022.

What is Welsh Government’s aim with boosters?

  • Welsh Government announced at the start of the week that they plan to offer all eligible adults their booster by the end of December
  • Aneurin Bevan University Bevan Health Board has asked people not to call to ask when they will get appointments for a booster – more on that here.

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