How the latest pandemic changes will affect Bridgend County Borough

copyright Lisa Baker 2021

Welsh Government has confirmed that from 11 October, people will need to display a NHS Covid-19 pass and demonstrate they are fully vaccinated against coronavirus in order to enter a nightclub or attend an indoor or outdoor organised event.

With the Welsh infection rate increasing to 500 cases per 100,000 people and admissions to hospital rising every week, the move is one of several that has been announced to help control the spread of coronavirus.

The requirement to show an NHS Covid-19 pass will apply to anyone who is aged 18 and over who wishes to enter a nightclub or attend an indoor non-seated event for more than 500 people, outdoor non-seated events with more than 4,000 in attendance, or any setting or event featuring more than 10,000 people.

People who are fully vaccinated can download the NHS Covid-19 pass for free to securely prove or share their vaccine status, or to demonstrate that they have received a negative lateral flow test result within the last 72 hours.

Welsh Government has also confirmed that its vaccination booster campaign has started, and that it will initially target frontline NHS staff and people living and working in care homes as well as people aged over 50 and those with underlying health conditions.

Children aged 12 to 15 will soon receive letters inviting them to receive a dose of the coronavirus vaccine. They will initially be offered one dose of the Pfizer vaccine and the programme will be rolled out in early October.

Welsh Government will also be stepping up awareness and enforcement around existing measures intended to keep people safe, such as the wearing of face coverings on public transport and in shops and other indoor public places.

Announcing the changes, First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “Across Wales, coronavirus cases have risen to very high levels over the summer as more people have been gathering and meeting. Tragically, more people are dying from this terrible virus.

“The very strong advice we have from our scientific advisers is to take early action to prevent infections increasing further. The last thing we want is further lockdowns and for businesses to have to close their doors once again – that’s why we must take small but meaningful action now to control the spread of the virus, and reduce the need for tougher measures later.”

The Leader, Cllr Huw David said: “Welsh Government has once again stressed the importance of continuing to work from home wherever possible, and to take all precautions to avoid putting our family, friends, neighbours and colleagues at risk of coronavirus.

“The pandemic is far from over, and health and social care services are facing extreme challenges. It is in our hands to do all that we can and stop this from getting worse, and I urge everyone to ensure that they are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 as quickly as possible.

“Anyone aged 16 and over who has not yet had their first dose can arrange to do so without an appointment – simply visit the Covid-19 vaccination centre based at Ravens Court in Bridgend (CF31 4AP) between 9.15am and 4.30pm, and bring along a form of ID such as a passport, driving licence or a utility bill for proof of address.

“Similarly, people who are overdue for their second Covid-19 vaccination can also walk in to any community vaccination centre for their second jab without an appointment as long as there has been an eight-week gap since their first dose.

“Elsewhere in Bridgend County Borough, mobile testing remains available for anyone experiencing symptoms of coronavirus. A drive-through testing facility has opened at the former Revlon site in Maesteg (CF34 9TS) between 9am to 5pm, and booking is recommended.

“Drive-through testing is also available at Coity and Litchard Community Centre (CF31 1PA) from 9am-5pm, and booking is essential before you can use this facility.

“A walk-through testing centre at the Bowls Hall car park in Angel Street, Bridgend (CF31 4AH) remains available between 8am-8pm, and booking is essential for this site.

“You can arrange appointments by visiting the Welsh Government website or calling 119. If you have hearing or speech difficulties, you can call 18001119 as an alternative.”