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COVID-19 update 82

This update was sent to the Cymorth mailing list on 30 December.

You can view the original email here and sign up to receive future mailings here

Welsh Government guidance: Alert Level 2

Wales moved to Alert Level 2 on Boxing Day and the following Welsh Government guidance now applies to everyone in Wales:

The Welsh Government's Supported Living guidance has also been updated to reflect these changes. 

Updated: Public Health Wales guidance

Public Health Wales has recently updated its Guidance to prevent COVID-19 among care home residents and manage cases, incidents and outbreaks in residential care settings in Wales in light of the Omicron variant.

This guidance references residential care homesSupported Living and Supported Accommodation settings. 

Advice to the public: Omicron

The Deputy Chief Medical Officer for Wales has published a statement, emphasising the following advice to keep people safe from the Omicron variant:

  • Get fully vaccinated, including having your booster – the vaccine offers significant protections for you and for people you care about.
  • Self-isolate and get a PCR if you have Covid-19 symptoms. Avoid others when ill.
  • Take lateral flow tests twice a week if you don’t have any symptoms and flow before you go out or meet people. If it’s positive don’t go and arrange to have a PCR test.
  • Keep your distance from others wherever possible.
  • Limit the number of people you meet with, especially if you’re meeting different people in quick succession.
  • Meet outdoors if you can or in well-ventilated places.
  • Avoid crowded places where possible.
  • Wash your hands; sneeze into tissues and keep surfaces lots of people touch clean.
  • Wear a face covering, especially in crowded spaces.
  • Use the NHS COVID Pass or show a negative lateral flow test result to attend large events, venues, cinemas, theatres and concert halls.

Self-isolation changes - from 31st December

On 23rd December the Minister for Health and Social Services published a written statement which outlined changes to the self-isolation requirements for close contacts of positive COVID-19 cases. This included plans to reduce the self-isolation period from 10 to seven days, on the basis of two negative lateral flow tests taken on days six and seven, from 5 January.

Today, the First Minister made a further Cabinet statement to state that this change is being brought forward and will instead be introduced on 31st December.

This means people who have tested positive for COVID-19 must self-isolate for seven days. On days six and seven of their self-isolation period they should take lateral flow tests and if these tests – taken 24 hours apart – are positive, they should continue to self-isolate. 

Changes to self-isolation for health and social care staff

The Deputy Chief Medical Officer for Wales has written to health and social care workers about the changes to the self-isolation guidance. You can read the letter in Welsh or in English

Advice to people who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable 

Eluned Morgan MS, the Minister for Health and Social Services, has published a written statement regarding advice for people who are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable to COVID-19.

The Chief Medical Officer for Wales is sending a letter to everyone on the Shielding Patient List to provide them with updated advice about the Omicron variant. 

Reminder: COVID-19 Workplace testing scheme

FAO:  CEOs / Senior managers

While many of you are already part of the Welsh Government's Workplace Testing Framework, we know that some of you have been accessing COVID-19 tests via community pharmacies and may well be encountering difficulties in accessing enough supplies for your staff due to the current high demand for tests.

The Welsh Government's workplace testing programme is designed to be used as a surveillance tool to support regular asymptomatic testing in private and public sector workplaces with more than 10 employees that cannot work from home.

Please read the guidance first, but if you have any questions on the framework or wish to discuss further please contact:

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© Cymorth Cymru 2022
Company Registration No: 5093332
Charity No: 1116774