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As a result of the Easter bank holiday weekend, we postponed the statistical release due to be published on 8 April 2021 by one week. This release contains the previous 3 weeks’ data to ensure consistency with previously published data.

Main results

These statistics show the latest number of PPE items which have been issued to the health and social care system in Wales.

  • Since 9 March 2020, the NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership (NWSSP) has issued over 773 million items of PPE to the health and social care sectors in Wales. Around 360 million of these were issued to the social care sector.
  • In the seven days to Sunday 11 April 2021 11.6 million items were issued, this compares to 9.3 million for the seven days ending Sunday 4 April 2021 and 31.5 million for the seven days ending Sunday 28 March. The increase in the number of items issued for the seven days ending 28 March is due to a larger number of type IIR masks being issued for vaccination packs.
  • The weekly number of PPE items issued has generally increased from March 2020 reaching a peak of 20.2 million in May 2020. Since then, the number of items issued each week fluctuates but has generally remained around 14 million with the exception of the week ending 28 March when 31.5 million items were issued.
Table 1: Number of PPE items issued
Item Since 9 March 2020 In the seven days to 28 March 2021 In the seven days to 4 April 2021 In the seven days to 11 April 2021
Aprons 131,393,550 2,470,825 1,149,625 1,845,450
Body bags 11,519 57 4 2
Eye protector 1,636,436 550 0 2,200
Type I and Type II masks 1,248,400 9,900 7,500 6,550
Type IIR masks 176,177,841 16,380,010 1,504,400 1,488,995
FFP2 masks 126,036 0 0 0
FFP3 masks 3,168,573 11,840 6,300 11,510
Face visors 5,993,667 77,478 34,019 66,834
Fit test kits and spares 6,057 2 0 48
Gloves 407,471,890 9,996,950 4,687,600 6,299,300
Gloves cuff 1,356,800 8,000 0 1,500
Gowns (fluid-resistant) 2,361,547 40,852 38,449 39,415
Gowns (other) 687,984 3,170 5,224 3,747
Hand sanitiser 460,640 5,044 4,151 4,036
Hand wipes 41,127,200 2,516,625 1,825,200 1,828,150
Respirator hoods 102 0 0 0
Respirator filters 35,273 0 0 0
Total 773,263,515 31,521,303 9,262,472 11,597,737

Source: NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership

The reporting of PPE items issued is based on individual units, except for:

  • gloves where a unit is reported based on the unit size of a pack
  • hand sanitiser where the unit is a bottle regardless of size

This data is subject to revisions and previous publications are not revised. The latest figures are the most up to date and cumulative figures will include any historical revisions.

Since September 2020 the number of items issued has fluctuated between 11 and 17 million but increased to 32 million in the week ending 28 March 2021.

Fluctuations in the weekly number of PPE items issued occur when local stores use their existing stocks which results in fewer items issued for that week. Bank holidays will also have an impact on the amount of stock ordered and may result in a decrease the following week.

PPE for vaccination packs are issued in bulk and then used over a number of weeks. This can lead to higher numbers of some items issued (such as Type IIR masks) for some weeks.

The data accompanying this chart is available on StatsWales.

Quality and methodology information

This data is management information provided to the Welsh Government by the NHS Wales Shared Services Partnership (NWSSP). NWSSP procures and distributes PPE for the health and social care sectors in Wales on behalf of the Welsh Government.  We are publishing this to provide a weekly summary of PPE items issued while it remains relevant to the response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This data has not undergone the same level of quality assurance as official statistics and the data may be subject to future revisions.

Local health boards request items of PPE from NWSSP via an online system. These items are then distributed from the NWSSP warehouses on scheduled delivery slots. Processes also exist for local health boards to request emergency deliveries of PPE if needed, and these emergency deliveries of PPE are included in this data. It is possible for some items to occasionally be rationed if stocks are low. Local health boards hold their own stocks of PPE and may also obtain supplies separately to this process. Data includes stock issued from NWSSP only and does not include any stock procured directly by the NHS or local authorities. The data will include PPE procured directly by NWSSP as well as PPE distributed to NWSSP by the UK Government. It reflects a snapshot at a point in time of a dynamic position.

This release reports on PPE items issued since 9 March 2020 as this represents the point at which the current reporting arrangements were established.

Data included in this release is correct at 8pm on 21 March 2021.

National Statistics status

These statistics are not National Statistics. However, as far as has been practicable, they have been collected and validated in accordance with the pillars and principles within the Code of Practice for Statistics. We continue to develop the data collection and quality assurance process to improve the data.

These statistics have been produced quickly in response to developing world events.

Well-being of Future Generations Act

The Well-being of Future Generations Act 2015 is about improving the social, economic, environmental and cultural wellbeing of Wales. The Act puts in place seven wellbeing goals for Wales. These are for a more equal, prosperous, resilient, healthier and globally responsible Wales, with cohesive communities and a vibrant culture and thriving Welsh language. Under section (10)(1) of the Act, the Welsh Ministers must (a) publish indicators ('national indicators') that must be applied for the purpose of measuring progress towards the achievement of the wellbeing goals, and (b) lay a copy of the national indicators before Senedd Cymru. The 46 national indicators were laid in March 2016.

Information on the indicators, along with narratives for each of the well-being goals and associated technical information is available in the Well-being of Wales report.

Further information on the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.

The statistics included in this release could also provide supporting narrative to the national indicators and be used by public services boards in relation to their local wellbeing assessments and local wellbeing plans.

Next update

The next release will be on Thursday 29 April 2021.

We want your feedback

We welcome any feedback on any aspect of these statistics which can be provided by email to

Contact details

Statistician: Abi Woodham
Telephone: 0300 025 1053

Media: 0300 025 8099

SFR 110/2021