PLAID Cymru Leader Adam Price has urged the Welsh Government to “urgently” declare Coronavirus a notifiable disease.
Both England and Wales have not yet declared the Coronavirus as an official notifiable disease.
The Scottish Government, the Northern Ireland government and the Republic of Ireland the Guernsey Government have all formally declared Coronavirus as “notifiable” – which places a legal responsibility on medical professionals to tell health officials of suspected cases immediately.
The UK Department of Health and Social Care said it plans to amend their list.
Wales has its own legislation – the Health Protection (Notification) (Wales) Regulations 2010 – which lists notifiable diseases in its Schedule 1.
Declaring a disease as “notifiable” is also the formal statutory process for monitoring infectious diseases which means certain types of insurance won’t cover losses from it.
The financial consequences of this means that business with certain insurance for disease outbreak will be covered by losses. Business in Wales currently have no such cover.
Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price said it “beggars belief” that the Welsh Government hadn’t already declared Coronavirus a “notifiable disease”.
Mr Price said that in addition to no financial assurances being given to those on zero hours contracts, businesses in Wales were now faced with uncertainty because their insurance wouldn’t cover any losses as a result of the virus because it wasn’t registered as a notifiable disease.
The Plaid Cymru Leader said Welsh Government have a “duty of care and responsibility” and urged them to declare the virus as a “notifiable disease” urgently to “protect people and their livelihoods” and warned the Welsh Government not to be “complacent”.
Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price said,
“As we stand on the brink of a global pandemic it beggars’ belief that the Welsh Government haven’t yet declared that the Coronavirus is a “notifiable disease”. Welsh Government seems to be operating two steps behind the other nations at the moment.
“I asked the First Minister yesterday what financial assurances he could give to people on zero hour contracts, agency staff and the self-employed in the event of the disease spreading. Now we find out that businesses in Wales are also at risk because their insurance won’t cover losses from COVID-19 because it isn’t registered as a notifiable disease.
“The Welsh Government has a duty of care and responsibility to its citizens. We urge them to declare the Coronavirus as a notifiable disease urgently – to both protect people and their livelihoods in the event of a serious outbreak. We can’t be complacent.