Number of vaccinations exceed coronavirus cases for first time - but still far off from target

As of January 21, Public Health Wales said 190, 435 vaccinations have been carried out.

More people in Wales have received the first dose of the coronavirus vaccine than those who have been diagnosed with Covid-19, latest figures show.

As of January 21, Public Health Wales said 190, 435 vaccinations have been carried out.

Data shows more than half of care home residents have been vaccinated - with 9,364 receiving their first dose. More than 20,000 care home workers have also received it.

A total of 180,035 cases of coronavirus have been confirmed since the start of the pandemic.

It comes as Public Health Wales confirmed a further 46 deaths in the last 24 hours from Covid-19.

Figures for the last seven days up to January 17 show the incidence rate for Wales has dropped to 270 cases per 100,000 people, while the percentage of people testing positive has reduced to 16.5%.

Credit: PA

Health minister Vaughan Gething told a press conference on Wednesday that "real falls" were being seen in cases of Covid-19 across Wales, including north Wales, but there will be no "significant" changes to lockdown rules at the end of the month.

Vaughan Gething said that more than 5% of people in Wales have received Covid-19 jabs and the vaccination programme would "move up another gear" this week.

He said: "Supplies of the Oxford Astra-Zeneca vaccine have increased markedly – we expect to receive almost double the amount of vaccine this week as we had in the first fortnight.

He continued: "This means more people over 80 and more people living and working in care homes will be vaccinated in GP practices and by community nurses staffing the 14 mobile units.

"We are vaccinating almost 1,000 care home residents every day."

Mr Gething said a further 60,000 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine would be provided for use in mass vaccination centres in Wales this week. 

What are the Welsh Governments vaccine targets?

The Welsh Government has said it wants to vaccinate around 700,000 people by mid-February.

That figure includes those people considered to be of the highest priority; all care home residents and staff, frontline health and social care staff, everyone over 70 and anyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable.

The next target is that all over 50s will be vaccinated by spring, and all other age groups will get their jabs by the autumn.

Is Wales on track?

The latest figures show an extra 14,619 people in Wales received the first dose since the previous 24 hour period.

To reach the target for the highest priority groups, an average of more than 20,000 people will need to be vaccinated every day between now and mid-February.

  • Analysis by Health Correspondent James Crichton-Smith

This is reason to be hopeful. It shows that Wales is - ultimately - going in the right direction.

It wasn't long ago that I was writing about how all the numbers in Wales were going the other way.In the last few days, Wales has scaled up its vaccine programme and the Welsh Government said it is optimistic it will hit its mid-February target of vaccinating everyone in the top four priority groups.

But what does this mean in reality?

Well, not a great deal.

While we can take heart from the vaccines to cases comparison, the percentage of the population vaccinated is still only around 6%.

You don't get anywhere near herd immunity until much nearer 75% or 80%.

This means that it is still essential for everyone to continue to abide by social distancing rules, wear face masks and wash hands in order to prevent the spread of the virus as much as possible.

Wales will, one day, somehow and in some form, emerge from the Covid woods, but it isn't there yet...