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COVID-19: All adults in Wales offered first jab amid another 247 cases of COVID - minister

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All eligible adults in Wales have been offered their first dose of the coronavirus vaccine, the nation's economy minister has confirmed.

It comes as Wales reported another 247 positive cases of COVID-19 in its latest daily update.

Vaughan Gething said the incidence rate in Wales was now 18.1 cases per 100,000 people - the lowest rate of the UK nations.

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He added the vaccination programme was making "excellent progress", with nearly 1.4 million people in Wales having received both jabs, equivalent to 54.9% of the country's adult population.

The latest figures takes the total number of reported cases to 214,004. No new deaths have been reported.

It compares with 75 people testing positive in last Monday's update, when one death was reported. The total number of deaths stands at 5,572.

Mr Gething said: "Over recent weeks, as restrictions have gradually been lifted, we have been able to reconnect and enjoy more aspects of life before COVID in a safe way. That progress is obviously good news for the economy.

"However, we do know that despite our success in controlling rates of COVID-19 and rolling out the vaccine programme, the Delta variant continues to present real challenges."

Latest data published by Public Health Wales shows that 2,216,031 people - 70.3% of the population - have received their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine. A total of 1,384,673 people have been given both doses.

Wales started a phased transition to alert level one on 7 June, which allowed up to 30 people to meet outdoors.

It also paved the way for concerts and sporting events to go ahead with up to 4,000 people non-seated and 10,000 seated as long as risk assessments and COVID precautions were in place.

In total, 315 cases of the Delta variant, also known as the Indian variant, have now been identified in Wales.

Mr Gething said the variant meant the Welsh government had to take a phased approach to lifting restrictions.

"We are relaxing restrictions around outdoor events and activities first because the evidence continues to suggest the risk of infection is significantly lower outdoors compared to indoors," he said.

"While this is absolutely the right decision for Wales, we recognise the impact it will have on a significant number of businesses, particularly wedding venues and indoor attractions."

Mr Gething said there would be further funding for businesses "materially affected" by the phased move to alert level one.

Eligible businesses such as indoor attractions and wedding venues will be entitled to an additional payment of between £875 and £5,000 depending on their "size and circumstances", he added.

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