People shielding from coronavirus in Wales allowed outdoors from Monday

People who have been shielding in Wales during the coronavirus crisis can now exercise outdoors and meet people from another household, as long as it takes place outdoors.

Around 130,000 people in Wales considered most at risk from coronavirus were asked not to leave the house at all until at least the middle of June.

On Friday, First Minister Mark Drakeford said he is "very aware" of the impact of isolation on those shielding, and promised they have "not been forgotten".

There are two changes in advice for people shielding from coronavirus in Wales which apply from Monday 1st June:

  • Outdoor exercise is unlimited, as long as individuals strictly follow social distancing rules and hygiene practices.

  • Those who are shielding can meet outside with people from another household – but should not go into another person’s house or share food with them.

There are no other changes being made to the advice for those who are shielding.

The advice is they should continue to follow all the other advice previously given - they should not go shopping or attend work outside of the home and they should continue to have food and medicine delivered to them.

Risk can never be completely eliminated but we advise those shielding to exercise at times that are less busy, so the risk of contact with others is reduced.

Dr Frank Atherton, Chief Medical Officer for Wales

The Health Minister Vaughan Gething said: "We recognise how challenging these last few months, with minimal face-to-face contact with others, has been."

I am pleased that so many have been shielding so diligently – not only protecting themselves but also helping to protect our NHS.

Vaughan Gething MS, Health Minister

All who are shielding will receive a letter from the Chief Medical Officer for Wales in the coming fortnight setting out the next steps.

Darren Millar MS, the Shadow Minister for Covid Recovery, said the changes are "good news for some."

While good news for some, this decision rubs salt into the wound for hundreds of thousands of less vulnerable people who still can’t see their families because of the five-mile cruel rule.

Darren Millar MS, Shadow Minister for Covid Recovery