HYWEL Dda University Health Board has now issued more than 550,000 coronavirus vaccines, according to its latest figures up to August 25.

It reports that 266,198 people have now had both jabs across the three counties of Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire.

There were 5,431 vaccines administered in the past seven days across the region, with 1,562 first doses given and 3,869 second doses.

This week the health board has been writing to those aged 16 and 17 inviting them to their nearest centre. Those in this age group will be offered the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

A statement from Hywel Dda said: "Following updated JCVI advice, the health boards in Wales are now inviting all people aged 16 and over to be vaccinated.

"If you are aged 16 or over and live in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion or Pembrokeshire you can access your Covid-19 vaccine by booking an appointment through 0300 303 8322 or email Covidenquiries.hdd@wales.nhs.uk"

The statement continues: "The JCVI has advised that young people aged 12 to 15 at an increased risk of coronavirus (Covid-19) should be offered the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

"This includes children and young people with: severe neuro-disabilities, down's syndrome, underlying conditions resulting in immunosuppression and a diagnosis of learning/intellectual disability.

"The JCVI also recommends that those aged 12 to 15 who live with someone who is immunosuppressed should also be offered the vaccine.

"This week, we have started to contact (by telephone) the families of those aged 12 to 15 at increased risk to book appointments. We kindly request that if you are the parent or guardian of a child who is at increased risk, to not attend our walk-in clinics and please wait to be contacted by the vaccination team."

The latest vaccine figures across the three counties are as follows:

In Carmarthenshire (population 188,771) 131,456 first doses have been given (70.7 per cent) and 122,918 second doses (65.1 per cent).

In Ceredigion (population 72,695) 52,719 first doses have now been given (72.5 per cent) and 49,207 second doses (67.7 per cent).

In Pembrokeshire (population 125,818) 92,831 first does have been given (73.8 per cent) and 86,727 second doses (68.9 per cent).