The First Minister will say, at his regular 21-day review press conference, to be held on Friday (December 10), that even though only a handful of cases of Omicron have so far been confirmed in Wales, we must be prepared for cases to rise quickly and sharply.
The First Minister will ask people to take regular lateral flow tests before going out and to wear face coverings in all public places to help protect people in the lead up to Christmas.
Wales will remain at alert level zero after the latest review of the COVID regulations. However, with the spread of the Omicron variant, the Welsh Government is strongly advising:
- People flow before they go. This means taking a lateral flow test before going out – whether that’s to a Christmas party; Christmas shopping; visiting friends or family; going to any crowded or busy place or before travelling.
- If the test is positive, don’t go out. Arrange for a PCR test and self-isolate.
- People to wear face coverings in pubs and restaurants, when they aren’t eating or drinking. Everyone must wear face coverings in most other indoor public places, in accordance with the law, including in cinemas and theatres.
WG are also making three changes to the regulations to:
- Clarify that people face coverings must be worn in theatres, cinemas or concert halls (except when eating or drinking or when at in-house cafes or bars)
- Require face coverings to be worn during a professional driving lesson or practical test;
- Remove proof of natural immunity from the domestic version of the Covid Pass.
The changes on face coverings will come into force on Saturday 11 December and their purpose is to remove any ambiguity from the regulations.The changes for the Covid Pass will come into force on Wednesday 15 December, at the same time as in England. This will ensure the requirements are the same in both countries.