AN intensive care consultant at a North Wales Hospital says the arrival of a second Covid-19 vaccine offers 'light at the end of the tunnel' following what has been a tough year for so many people.

Yesterday, the Oxford University and AstraZeneca was approved for use in the UK.

The jab, which has been described as a “game changer”, was given the green light by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Speaking from Ysbyty Glan Clwyd Hospital, Bodelwyddan, in a video posted to Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board's (BCUHB) Facebook page this morning, Dr Richard Pugh said the vaccine gives us a glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel.

He said: "None of us would have spent Christmas quite as we would have liked to have done, but this is a serious time.

"We have been relatively lucky in North Wales and the number of cases of Coronavirus have not been that high compared with elsewhere. But things have began to change in recent weeks.

"The numbers of patients we have seen in intensive care with Coronavirus have doubled in North Wales over the last week and the number of new cases of Coronavirus, every week, has been going up and in fact the number of cases of Coronavirus identified over the last week in the North East of Wales is higher now than the all Wales average.

"And what this means is we'll be seeing more cases, more people coming into hospital with Coronavirus over coming weeks, and a substantial proportion of those will be come significantly ill.

"We see just under a quarter of the patients who come to intensive care because they are so severely ill. This disease affects people who are relatively young and even people who don't have any significant chronic illnesses.

"There seems to be light at the end of the tunnel because we know access to vaccines has had a dramatic lift in the last 24 hours. But this is going to take some time to have its effect on the transmission of Coronavirus in our region.

"So I'd ask please be sensible, be safe. This isn't forever."