Plaid Cymru Shadow Minister for Health Rhun ap Iorwerth MS has called on the Welsh Government to get its “house in order” on testing.
The Welsh government announced yesterday it was taking part in a UK-wide home testing scheme, but the UK government website showed at Tuesday lunchtime that there were no home kits available and that there was no availability for the public to go to a drive-in testing centre in Wales.
The Shadow Health Minister said it was “worrying” that the scheme had already “hit the buffers” after only being announced yesterday.
Mr ap Iorwerth said that it confirmed that Plaid Cymru was right to warn about lack of urgency in increasing testing capacity in Wales and said assurances were now needed to get things “back on track”.
Mr ap Iorwerth said “a robust test and trace regime” was urgently needed.
The Shadow Health Minister also said he was worried to hear the Health Minister admit that some people had received so-called shielding letters from the Welsh Government in error.
The Health Minister admitted he couldn’t say how many people had received the letters in error.
Mr ap Iorwerth said the Labour Welsh Government had seen “error after error” and people needed to know why.
Plaid Cymru Shadow Minister for Health Rhun ap Iorwerth MS said,
“Yesterday, we got the announcement about Wales’ inclusion in a UK-wide home testing booking and test delivery scheme. Today, that scheme hit the buffers, with no testing slots or testing kits available. It’s worrying.
“That suggests to me that what we’ve been saying all along about a lack of urgency in increasing capacity in Wales was correct! Of course Welsh Government needed to build that capacity quicker, and now across the UK we’re stuck in this boat together. We need urgent assurances that things will get back on track.
“Elements of the fight against coronavirus will be done on a UK-wide, a Europe-wide and even a global level, but we have to get our house in order too. We need a robust test and trace regime that we can trust.
“It was also worrying today hear the Minister admit that some people may have received so-called shielding letters from the Welsh Government in error, and that the Health Minister couldn’t even tell us how many people the errors affected. I know this was an exercise done under pressure, but we’ve seen error after error, and we need to know why.”