Thirty-five new cases of coronavirus have been recorded in the Hywel Dda health board area, according to today’s figures (Tuesday, February 23).
Today’s Public Health Wales figures show 21 new cases in Carmarthenshire, 11 in Pembrokeshire and three in Ceredigion.
Across Wales, 317 new cases have been confirmed and four new suspected Covid-19 deaths have also been reported by Public Health Wales.
The total number of cases in Wales is now 202,324, with 5,250 deaths.
Two more deaths have been recorded in the Hywel Dda area, with the total standing at 442 throughout the pandemic.
The total number of cases across the three counties is now 15,365 – 10,380 in Carmarthenshire, 3,276 in Pembrokeshire and 1,709 in Ceredigion.
There have been 6,300 tests carried out since the last report.
Across Wales, 869,653 have received a first dose of Covid-19 vaccine and 49,729 the second dose.
In Hywel Dda the health board has administered 103,989 vaccinations up to February 17 – 48,230 in Carmarthenshire, 38,828 in Pembrokeshire and 18,701 in Ceredigion.
A further 3,230 have been given to council or health board staff working in the area but living elsewhere.
Dr Giri Shankar, Incident Director for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak response at Public Health Wales, said:
“Public Health Wales is today confirming four additional cases of the South African variant of Coronavirus in Wales since the previous update on 17 February, bringing the total number to 21.
“We have identified a single case of the South African variant as part of routine genomic sequencing in the Flintshire local authority area with no known link to relevant contacts or travel history. The individual was self-isolating while symptomatic, and there is no evidence of wider community transmission. An investigation is ongoing.
“We have identified an additional positive case of the South African variant in the Conwy local authority area. The case has a travel history, and the investigation is ongoing.
“We have identified two additional positive cases in West Wales with a link to relevant contacts. These cases are linked with the travel associated cases we confirmed on 17 February in West Wales.
“There remains no evidence of sustained community transmission of the South African variant in Wales. Anyone who is a contact of theses case will be contacted through the Test, Trace, Protect process and provided with additional advice for themselves, their household and other contacts.
“There is no evidence that the South African variant causes more serious illness, although there is some evidence that it can spread more easily, and that vaccines – although still effective – may not work quite as well against it.
“Because of the emergence of new more transmissible variants, it is even more vital that we all keep to the lockdown restrictions and do not meet other people.
“This means that you must stay at home. If you must leave home keep your distance, wash your hands regularly, and wear a face mask when required according to the regulations.
“Coronavirus rates have fallen in every part of Wales, but remain higher in some parts. We remind the public that we remain under level 4 restrictions to keep infection rates falling.
“Please stay at home, meet only the people you live with, work from home if you can, wear a face covering where required, wash your hands regularly, and stay two metres from anyone you do not live with.
“As primary school children aged three to seven years in foundation phase returned to face-to-face learning this week, we thank parents for their perseverence during the winter.
“We need your continued support to control the spread of Coronavirus, so please do not send your child to school if they are unwell, even if you are not sure if they have Coronavirus. Please continue to work from home if at all possible.
“When you take your child to school, always keep your distance from other parents, wear a face covering, and don’t stay around and chat. Please don’t invite other children or their parents to your home to play or stay, even outdoors, and even if they are in the same bubble at school.
“Make sure your child understands the importance of washing their hands regularly.
“The Welsh Government has also confirmed that from Saturday 20 February, four people from two different households are able to meet outdoors for socially distanced local exercise. Please remember this is solely for the purpose of exercise and that individuals should remain at a social distance, and that this guidance doesn’t apply to private gardens.
“From March 1, the law will be changed to allow licensed wedding venues, such as visitor attractions and hotels, to re-open but only to perform wedding and civil partnership ceremonies.
“Restrictions on UK and international travel remain in place. More information on current travel guidance is available on the Welsh Government website.
“More than 850,000 people have now received a first does of the safe and effective Coronavirus vaccine. We encourage everyone, whatever their background, socio-demographic and ethnicity, to have the vaccine when they are offered it. We also stress the importance of seeking information from a trusted source such as Public Health Wales, the Welsh Government, local health board or GP.
“If you or a member of your household develop a cough, fever or change in sense of taste or smell, you must self-isolate immediately and book a free Coronavirus test, either by calling 119 or by visiting www.gov.wales/getting-tested-coronavirus-covid-19.”