Eluned Morgan, Minister for Health and Social Services
I am extremely pleased to confirm that 90% of adults in Wales have had a first dose of COVID-19 vaccination and 72% have also had their second dose. This is a huge achievement and I would like to thank all those involved for their incredible work, as well as thanking the Welsh Public for taking up their vaccine to keep themselves and their families safe. This is incredible progress and a real team effort from everyone in Wales.
The NHS COVID Pass allows you to show others that you’ve received a COVID-19 vaccine when travelling abroad. All people vaccinated and registered with a GP in Wales can get their digital COVID pass through the NHS website. All people registered with a GP in England but vaccinated in Wales will be able to show their COVID-19 vaccination data through the NHS website from 17 July.
I know there has been some concern around the media coverage of certain vaccines not been authorised by the European Medicines Authority (EMA) and not being recognised by some countries for travel purposes. All doses used in the UK have been subject to rigorous safety and quality checks, including individual batch testing and physical site inspections, by the medicine’s regulator, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). To be clear, no Covishield vaccines have been given in the UK. All AstraZeneca vaccines given in the UK appear on the NHS COVID Pass as Vaxzevria. The EMA has authorised this vaccine and we are confident travel will not be affected.
I’m also aware there has been media coverage of volunteers, who have selflessly participated in trial vaccination, not being able to evidence their vaccinations and therefore having difficulties with travelling abroad. Trial vaccination are accepted as valid throughout the UK and the UK Government is working with WHO on behalf of all nations to encourage other countries to also accept them as valid. Not all the data from trials will show on the Covid Pass until the end of July but trial teams are in communication with volunteers affected by this. I am very grateful to the people who have put themselves forward for trials and I am committed to making sure they are not disadvantaged for doing so.
I have heard that some people in North Wales have had difficulty booking their second dose of AstraZeneca vaccine. Most walk-in centres in North Wales are aimed at the under 40s who have not yet taken up their offer so have appropriate supply for this age category. Those needing to book a second dose of AstraZeneca in North Wales should contact their health board (Betsi Cadwaladr UHB) on 03000 840004. To help further, from 14 July there will be additional slots every day for AstraZeneca appointments in Betsi Cadwaladr UHB. All health boards, including Betsi Cadwaladr UHB, have enough supply of vaccine and are all working hard to offer slots as close to 8 weeks as possible.
I will be publishing our COVID-19 vaccination programme weekly update today.
The vaccine is a really important defence in our fight against coronavirus and getting back to doing the things we enjoy. Our work on the vaccination programme will not stop, we do not want to leave anyone behind. I urge everyone to take up your vaccine to help us be confident in moving out of restrictions and opening up our society once again. Ask your friends and family, particularly those aged under 30, if they have had the vaccine and please encourage them to come forward. It is never too late to get your vaccine. Vaccination centres across many parts of Wales are open for walk-in appointments to make it easier for you to access the vaccine. We have made incredible progress but there is always more work to do.