By Eluned Morgan
Wales along with other Devolved Nations in the UK is to loan 20 million Covid-19 lateral flow tests from our allocations to the UK Government to support the response and demand in England.
The Welsh Government has worked hard to ensure we have the resources available to support our response to the pandemic in Wales including testing services, vaccines and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Sometimes this has involved working with other UK nations to provide us with more agility and economies of scale where needed.
As part of these arrangements Wales has on several occasions during the pandemic provided mutual aid to support the response in the other nations.
In relation to PPE since the start of April 2020, Wales has issued 13.8 million items of mutual aid to other UK nations and received 1.4 million items on request from Scotland and Northern Ireland. Welsh health services buying power has meant that we have been able to provide £37.5 million of PPE for other UK nations.
In return Wales has received around 3.3 million items from the UK Government to replenish stocks.
The Welsh Government is pleased to be able to support the request for additional help in England’s hour of need.
COVID-19 also requires a global response and Wales has and will continue to play a part in supporting other nations including England but also further afield. This included providing medical supplies, including ventilators, to support the international emergency response to the coronavirus pandemic in India.
This statement is being issued during recess in order to keep members informed. Should members wish me to make a further statement or to answer questions on this when the Senedd returns I would be happy to do so.