“Urgent” changes are needed to the vaccine rollout in Wales, according to a letter from Bridgend MP, Jamie Wallis, to First Minister, Mark Drakeford.
Dr Wallis has called on the Welsh Government to speed-up the pace of the vaccine rollout in Wales as we see further statistics that Wales continues to be behind the rest of the UK in terms of a percentage of its population that have received a first-dose.
These vaccines were labelled a game-changer by many within the UK and Welsh Governments and getting this rollout right is essential to easing the restrictions on our freedoms and to allow businesses to operate.
In the letter Jamie said: “Your comments earlier this week saying that ‘there would be no point in using the vaccine in the first week and then having the vaccinators standing around with nothing to do’ has caused widespread anger and confusion at a time when we need public support behind such an effort. This has even led to some top GP’s calling on you to ‘stop sitting on supplies and get on with it’.
“If it is the administration or distribution of the vaccine that is causing concern, you will be aware that the Army has been made available, and are ready, should you decide to take up this option. I understand that the supply of both approved vaccines is not an issue and your Government needs to press-ahead with ramping up the vaccination process, immediately.
“This lack of urgency meant that it took public pressure for your Government to seek to match the UK Government’s target that all within the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) groups 1-4 be vaccinated by mid-February.
“The vaccine must be rolled out at pace and allowing these doses to pile up, intentionally, is unnecessarily risking lives and making us in Wales fall further behind that ambitious target to vaccinate the core vulnerable groups by mid-February.
“Many of my elderly and extremely vulnerable constituents are asking me when they are likely to receive their vaccination. The target date of mid-February will require vaccination to occur at 5 times the rate as in the preceding four weeks. Regrettably, I have little confidence that your current plans can achieve this.
“With respect First Minister, for many people in Wales such as those in vulnerable groups, this is a sprint – and one we need to win to saves lives, restore freedoms and open up the economy.
“Vaccinating an entire population is a challenge, but the nation asks you now to please expedite the vaccine rollout.”
You can see the letter in full on Jamie’s official Facebook page here https://www.facebook.com/jamiewallisbridgend/posts/454586015915430