West Wales communities ‘in eye of the storm’ says health board with 900 medical staff off work

Outbreaks of the virus have occurred in all hospitals in the area Credit: PA

Hywel Dda University Health Board, which runs hospitals in Pembrokeshire, Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion has confirmed around 930 of its staff are currently off work, either sick or isolating.

The health board is warning communities in the area they are ‘in the eye of the storm’, facing record numbers of cases of coronavirus.

The seven-day infection rate for the health board area (up to December 9), was at 316.3 per 100,000 of the population - that’s higher than London and Birmingham for the same period. 

Outbreaks of the virus have occurred in all hospitals in the area, resulting in the closure of some wards, and the health board has appealed to the public for support, it’s Chair describing this as “the darkest hour”.

Maria Battle said, "whilst hope is on the horizon in the form of the vaccine, this feels like our hardest hour yet."

She continued, "the risk we all face could be greatly reduced by each of us taking action".

Leaders of all three local authorities have also voiced their concerns.

Carmarthenshire County Council Leader Cllr Emlyn Dole described the current situation as "seriously concerning", and urged people to "do everything they can to stay safe."