TEETHING problems with the newly-adopted online system for requesting coronavirus tests were to be expected, Wales' health minister has said.

Speaking at the Welsh Government's daily coronavirus briefing today, Vaughan Gething admitted that increased demand had put pressure on the online system being used to request tests.

“There will be a higher level of demand in the first few days,” he said. “We need to make sure there is the right level of capacity.

“We must also integrate this with critical workers.


“The access will be improved and we will understand the teething problems which exist.”

However, he said that once these teething problems are ironed out, “all critical workers in Wales who need a test can now use the UK website to book one”.

“They will be able to visit one of the drive-in centres throughout Wales,” he said.

“Anyone with symptoms can request a test through the UK-wide internet service.

“There is also the 1119 bilingual telephone service.

“Priority will be given to the families of key workers.”

As Wales remains bound by the message to stay at home and maintain the lockdown, Mr Gething was asked about reports some people had been incorrectly sent letters marking them as being in the vulnerable category.

“There is not a system-wide failure,” he said.

“However, we did anticipate, with the large number of letters sent out, some will have been sent out wrongly.

“If you believe you are in the wrong category you can view shielding advice on the Welsh Government website.”

He was also asked whether the response of the Welsh Government, and the UK as a whole, to recognising certain symptoms of the disease was lagging behind other countries.

“This is part of the challenge we have faced,” he said.

“We know more about the disease now than we did six weeks ago.

“The advice will change as the scientific evidence builds.

“We are looking at that advice and making choices.

“That’s what we will continue to do.

“It’s entirely possible that different choices will be made as we learn more.”

However, he did acknowledge that taking note of what was happening abroad as well as domestically was important.

“We continue to look around the world at the different responses, especially as some are slightly further ahead of us,” he said.

“It’s always going to be a blend of what takes place in the UK as well as further afield.”