Another lockdown may be needed in Wales to stop the NHS being overwhelmed as the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital soared to a record high.
There are now more than 1,800 people in Welsh hospitals with confirmed or suspected coronavirus – the highest number recorded and 400 more than the previous peak in April.
Describing the situation as “incredibly serious”, the Welsh health minister, Vaughan Gething, accepted more restrictions might be needed, possibly even before Christmas.
The figures come just a month after the end of a 17-day “firebreak” lockdown, which was believed at the time to have been successful and was expected to give the country a clear run up to the new year.
But the Welsh government has since conceded that it might have been better to bring in other curbs when the firebreak was lifted.
At a press conference on Monday, Gething said coronavirus cases were rising again across almost the whole of Wales. The country was the only part of the UK where infection rates were not falling at the end of November, he said.
The minister said the latest data shows that the all-Wales case rate was almost 70 points higher on Monday than it was on Friday. “This shows you how just fast coronavirus is spreading,” he said.