Daily figures pass more than 2,000 Covid cases and 29 deaths in Wales as FM rules out pre-Christmas lockdown
Twenty nine more people in Wales have died from coronavirus-related illnesses in the last 24 hours, latest data shows.
Figures released by Public Health Wales, which showed a further 2,234 cases, come as the First Minister ruled out a pre-Christmas lockdown, but warned if cases continue to rise then the NHS will struggle to cope.
The data from the last seven days also shows nine of Wales' 22 local authorities now have more than 500 cases per 100,000 people.
During Friday's press conference, Mark Drakeford said Wales will reintroduce a tier-like "traffic light" system of national restrictions in response to the worsening crisis.
He said the country was currently in the third-highest alert level of a possible four, with it being "inevitable" that greater restrictions resembling a lockdown would be imposed after Christmas if Wales moved to the highest level.
It comes amid fears from doctors on the frontline who have warned the relaxation of rules over Christmas (23 - 27 December) where up to three households are permitted to mix indoors will be like "adding petrol on an already burning fire".Rising levels of Covid are being seen almost across the entire nation, with the likes of Neath Port Talbot and Merthyr Tydfil seeing a positivity rate in tests at more than 700 per 100,000 people.
The council leader in Neath Port Talbot told ITV News the situation there could see local hospitals struggling to cope if field hospitals need to be reopened to cope with rising admissions of Covid patients.
Current Covid measures in Wales include the closure of indoor entertainment venues, outdoor attractions and an alcohol ban in pubs, cafes and restaurants. Mark Drakeford warned extra restrictions will be brought in after Christmas if these measures "do not success in the turning the tide of the virus".