Can Wales get out of the post-Christmas lockout?

Can Wales get out of the post-Christmas lockout?

Many of the lockdown measures that will be launched in Wales on Christmas Eve will continue until early mid-January.

First Minister Mark Drakeford announced yesterday that Wales was moving towards another lockout after Christmas, in response to a steady rise in coronavirus cases, moving to new – and higher – warning levels.

The situation will be reviewed every three weeks, ie early January 18 before the warning level four is changed.

All non-essential retailers, including nearby liaison services and fitness and recreation centers, will be closed at the end of business on Christmas Eve.

All hospitality businesses will be closed on Christmas Day from 6 p.m.

And from Bank Holiday Monday, December 28, at the end of the five-day Christmas period, strict restrictions will apply to domestic mixing, traveling, staying home and vacation accommodation.

The later date is when the warning level four formally comes into play.

The ministers have indicated that a set of national measures is being taken at various times in Wales to get various areas out of the lockout.

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“We’ll review the rules in three weeks,” Mr Druckford said yesterday.

“If parts of Wales have positioned themselves in a reliable and sustainable way, this is the moment we will see if it makes sense to introduce some regional differences.

“But we don’t know until then, and those changes should be exactly the same – intact and reliable.”

The Welsh government’s coronavirus control plan, published earlier this week, outlines what the Welsh government will do when it comes time to review the Lakda review.

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The largest measure is to look at the seven-day Wales-wide case rate per 100,000 population rolling. For seven days until 11 December – the latest Public Health Wales figure unaffected by an under-reporting issue related to data system maintenance and upgrades – the figure is 377.8.

In order for Wales to move to third tier, and thus allow businesses to reopen, the seven-day case rolling should be between 150 and 300 per 100,000 population.

Confirmed case rates for more than 60 should not suggest rapid growth to the third tier, and a significant increase in the rate of future events should not be expected in the next two weeks.

Across the vine, a test positivity rate will need to be between five and 10 percent over a seven-day period. From the latest figures from Public Health Wales, which is currently 20.5 percent.

Estimates of the coronavirus population in Wales should be between 0.75 and one per cent.

For all these factors, the Welsh Government will also consider the exchange rate of these figures.

Concerns about the hospital’s capacity and the potential pressure of cases increasing in the next four to five weeks will also be a factor, and the concerns of local health professionals will be considered.

About the author: Cory Weinberg

"Student. Subtly charming organizer. Certified music advocate. Writer. Lifelong troublemaker. Twitter lover."

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