WE must all pull together to address the needs that arise from the coronavirus outbreak, an MP urges.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Welsh Government has the power to decide what they feel is right for Wales through their devolved powers such as aspects of health, social care and business.
However, Sarah Atherton MP said this has caused ‘some degree of public confusion and delay’.
She said: “Many residents living in North East Wales watch and listen to UK broadcasting and rightly seek guidance from the UK Health Secretary, Prime Minister and Chief medical officer during this national crisis.
“The UK Government has adopted an ‘All Nations’ approach to making plans and preparations about how we should deal with this national crisis and continues to offer to include Wales within the national strategy.
“This joined-up concept works well when, for example bulk purchasing equipment like ventilators, oxygen supplies and testing kits. I am pleased to see the Welsh Government has now joined up the UK Government to look at the supply of Coronavirus testing equipment.”
The Wrexham MP said it is ‘essential’ that party politics is put to one side and reports that they are ‘all working hard behind the scenes’ to address the current challenges and ensure Wales is prepared for what may lie ahead.
The Welsh Government announced they would not run a central volunteer scheme like England, but have delegated the role of co-ordinating volunteering in two ways.
Firstly, people could volunteer via the Volunteering Wales website: https://volunteering-wales.net.
Secondly, the Welsh Government requested county councils arrange their own local schemes. Wrexham Council delegated this task to 3rd sector organisations. AVOW is being used locally, for further information visit: https://avow.org/2020/03/25/volunteering-to-support-service-providers/
Sarah Atherton added: “The UK Government introduced the NHS Responder Volunteer Scheme, whilst it wasn’t initially clear that the scheme applied to England only, many Welsh residents signed up to volunteer.
“Following the success of NHS Responder Volunteer Scheme in England , BCUHB have since set up a system whereby residents in Wales who wish to volunteer for the NHS locally can now register by emailing: [email protected]”
Last week, those in England who are ‘extremely vulnerable’ were sent a letter containing shielding advice.
Around 81,000 people in Wales are identified as very high-risk and so will be sent a letter from Wales’ Chief Medical Officer which includes clear advice to stay at home for 12-weeks.
The MP said: “There are calls for the Welsh Government to extend to number of diagnoses they consider as high risk. If you feel you are in this category and do not receive a letter, the advice is to contact your GP.
“You may have heard that people who receive a letter can also receive priority supermarket delivery slots. This is up and running in England and the Welsh Government are currently in discussions with supermarkets to arrange a similar scheme here in Wales.
“Similarly, you may have heard of a scheme whereby people in the high-risk category, who are asked to stay at home for 12 weeks and have no other way of obtaining food supplies, receive food boxes from their council.
“This is being rolled out in Wales, if you have registered to receive the food box and have not received it, you should contact Wrexham Council: 01978 292000.
“The situation is changing rapidly, we must all pull together to address the needs that arise from the coronavirus outbreak. Please contact me if you have any queries, comments or suggestions. I am here to help.”
Email [email protected] or call: 020 219 4885.