PLAID Cymru Leader Adam Price has today argued that the Welsh Government should appoint a procurement tsar to get to grips with Wales’s serious shortage of Covid-19 testing kits, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and medical devices for frontline health and care staff.

Wales is currently only testing 1,100 people a day when it was planning to test 6,000. This follows the collapse of an alleged deal between the Welsh Government and private company Roche which would have provided for 5,000 of those tests.

Adam Price made the case for the appointment of a tsar whose “sole responsibility” would be the procurement and supply of Covid-19 tests, PPE, and oxygen and medical devices for Wales.

He cited cases of care homes with just one or two boxes of surgical masks – each enough to last just two days for one patient, as well as hospital staff being forced to wear paper underwear over their hair due to the lack of any other protection.

Plaid Cymru Leader Adam Price said:

“The shortage of Covid-19 tests and PPE in Wales is severely hampering our efforts in tackling the spread of coronavirus.

“Wales must take matters into its own hands if we are to ensure watertight contracts for these essential products.

“That is why I’m calling on the Welsh Government to appoint a procurement tsar whose sole responsibility would be the procurement and supply of testing kits, PPE, and oxygen and medical devices for frontline staff in the health and care sectors.

“I have been made aware of care homes with just one or two boxes of surgical masks – each enough to last just two days for one patient, as well as hospital staff being forced to wear paper underwear over their hair due to the lack of any other protection.

“Similarly, we are going backwards in terms of testing when the Welsh Government had pledged 6,000 tests a day by now.

“Appointing one individual with one key responsibility would help us get to grips with this situation and ensure that Wales has all the resources it needs to tackle the spread of the virus.”

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