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Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: Latest updates on Wednesday
Last updated: Wednesday, 24 June, 2020, 13:43
- Four further Covid-19 deaths in Scotland announced on Wednesday
- Covid-19 second wave could mean Scots economy does not recover, experts warn
- Diageo announces £4 million in funding for Scots pubs
Two-metre rule about 'personality and politics', says scientist
The decision over the two-metre social distancing rule in Scotland is one of "personality and politics", a scientist has claimed.
Professor Hugh Pennington said the decision to reduce the distance is a political one, given how new Covid-19 is and the fact advice being given to both administrations will be "largely the same".
Writing in the Scottish Daily Mail, Prof Pennington said should there be a localised outbreak - in a place such as a bar - when the rule is relaxed then it could simply be shut down and the rest of the population will not be impacted.
Boris Johnson announced on Tuesday that social distancing will be relaxed to one metre plus in England from July 4 but Nicola Sturgeon said the two metre rule will remain in Scotland for now.
National Trust for Scotland prepares to reopen gardens
The National Trust for Scotland (NTS) is preparing to reopen dozens of gardens and estates as lockdown eases around the country.
It hopes to welcome visitors to around 30 places from July 6 onwards, including Culzean Country Park in South Ayrshire, Threave Garden in Dumfries and Galloway and Crathes Castle's garden and estate in Aberdeenshire.
The charity closed all of its properties in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, though it has reopened countryside sites such as St Abb's Head National Nature Reserve and The Pineapple near Stirling to local visitors in line with Scottish Government guidelines in recent weeks.
It is facing a £28 million shortfall due to the coronavirus pandemic and 429 staff have been put at risk of redundancy.
Nicola Sturgeon at FMQs LIVE:
The First Minister urged Scottish people to continue to follow Government advice to ensure that Covid-19 continues to be suppressed.
She said: "The choices we have made to date as individuals, and collectively as a society, have brought us this far - albeit with a lot of sorrow along the way.
"But arguably, the choices we make in the coming weeks will be even more important - as we learn to work, socialise and live alongside each other again, but in a way that keeps the virus under control.
"For us to meet each other indoors again, for more businesses to reopen, for children to return to school on a full time basis in August - all of that depends on all of us acting for the common good."
Nicola Sturgeon at FMQs LIVE:
The First Minister warned that if the Covid-19 virus begins to take hold again, then the move out of lockdown "will be halted".
Nicola Sturgeon said: "Our challenge - not an easy one - is to manage all of this change while keeping the virus firmly under control. If at any stage there appears to be a risk of its resurgence, our path out of lockdown will be halted and we may even have to go backwards.
"To avoid that, we must get as close as possible to elimination of the virus now and build confidence in our ability to control it in future through surveillance, testing, contact tracing and, where necessary, targeted suppression measures.
"If we can do that, then the move from phase 3 to phase 4 will become possible, perhaps as we go into August.
"That won't be easy and it certainly cannot be taken for granted. But we can all play a part in making it happen."
Nicola Sturgeon at FMQs LIVE:
As part of the updated route map for Scotland, the First Minister also announced that she hopes phase three will begin on July 9, after the regular review.
She said that she does not expect all of the phase three easing to happen at one time, however, households will be able to meet more people outdoors from July 10, as well as seeing an expansion of the extended household model.
Shopping centres will reopen on July 15, along with all holiday accommodation, should the suppression of the virus continue.
Pubs and restaurants will be able to open on the same date, subject to physical distancing measures along with "a number of conditions" being followed, Ms Sturgeon said.
The First Minister also said that barbers and hairdressers will also be able to open from July 15.
Nicola Sturgeon at FMQs LIVE: First Minister says if we succeed in suppressing the virus the prize is getting back to more normality
Nicola Sturgeon daily news briefing live: "indicative dates"
People can meet in extended groups outdoors(with physical distancing) -10 July
Households can meet indoors with up to a maximum of two other households (with physical distancing) -10 July
Organised outdoor contact sports can resume for children and young people (subject to guidance) -13 July
All dental practices begin to see registered patients for non-aerosol routine care. Work will begin to return aerosol generating procedures to practice safely -13 July
Increasing capacity within community optometry practices for emergency and essential eye care -13 July
Non-essential shops inside shopping centres can re-open (following guidance and with physical distancing) -13 July
All holiday accommodation permitted (following relevant guidance) -15 July
Indoor hospitality (subject to physical distancing rules and public health advice) -15 July
Hairdressers and barbers - with enhanced hygiene measures -15 July
Museums, galleries, cinemas, monuments, libraries - with physical distancing and other measures (e.g.ticketing in advance) -15 July
All childcare providers can open subject to individual provider arrangements -15 July
Nicola Sturgeon daily news briefing live: Hairdressers and barbers to reopen for 15 July
Nicola Sturgeon at FMQs LIVE:
The FM details the guidance in FACTS:
Face coverings in enclosed spaces
Avoid crowded places
Clean hands and surfaces regularly
Two metre distancing
Self-isolate and book a test if you have symptoms.
Nicola Sturgeon says R number is currently estimated to be between 0.6 and 0.8
Nicola Sturgeon daily news briefing live
Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed 18,191 people now have tested positive for Covid-19 - an increase of nine from yesterday.
The First Minister said 880 patients are in hospital with a suspected or confirmed case (up 15, though there has been a drop of 23 confirmed cases), with 23 being treated in intensive care (up two).
A further four people who tested positive have died in the last 24 hours, taking the total to 2,480 deaths in Scotland by that measure.
This is lower than the 4,119 deaths confirmed by NRS earlier as that figure includes all cases where Covid-19 is mentioned on a death certificate, even if the patient had not been tested.
Nicola Sturgeon daily news briefing live: Four further deaths in Scotland
Speaking at First Minister’s Questions, Ms Sturgeon said that four more people had died from the virus in the last 24 hours.
It brings the total death toll of people who tested positive for Covid-19 to 2,480.
Confirmed cases of the virus have now reached 18,191, an increase of nine on the day before.
The number of patients in hospital with confirmed or suspected coronavirus stands at 880 - 15 more than yesterday.
23 people are now being treated for the virus in Scotland’s intensive care units.
Ms Sturgeon called the trend in the figures “clear” and positive”.
A total of 4,119 Scots deaths linked to Covid-19, NRS figures show.
A total of 4,119 people have died in Scotland with confirmed or suspected coronavirus, according to the National Records of Scotland (NRS).
Forty-nine deaths relating to Covid-19 were registered between June 15 and June 21, down 20 on the previous week - the lowest weekly total since mid-March.
A total of 39 excess deaths - deaths above the five-year average - were recorded in this week.
Forty-one percent of all registered deaths involving Covid-19 in this week occurred in care homes, and the number of deaths in care homes fell for the eighth week, by 15 to 20.
The statistics are published weekly and account for all deaths registered in Scotland where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.
They differ from the lab-confirmed coronavirus deaths announced daily by the Scottish Government because they include suspected or probable cases of Covid-19.
Coronavirus-hit Skye care home will not have registration suspended
An application to suspend the registration of a coronavirus-hit care home has been dropped following improvements, a court has heard.
David Logan, appearing on behalf of petitioners Social Care and Social Work Improvement Scotland, which has been pursuing legal action against the operators of Home Farm on Skye, said an inspection in the last 48 hours found residents are no longer seriously at risk in terms of their health.
The case against the home's operators HC-One was launched in March after it emerged 10 residents had died at the care home amid the outbreak.
Mr Logan, appearing via video link to the hearing at Inverness Sheriff Court, said questions remain over who will operate the home in the long-term and said that must be established before further decisions are made.
Coronavirus tests which give results in minutes to be trialled by NHS
Coronavirus tests which could give results in minutes rather than days will be tried out in the NHS as part of a research programme.
Researchers from Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust and the University of Manchester will assess the effectiveness of tests, which could be quicker, more convenient and more accurate, as part of a £1.3 million national programme.
The Covid-19 National DiagnOstic Research and Evaluation Platform (CONDOR) - funded by the National Institute for Health Research, UK Research and Innovation, and Asthma UK and British Lung Foundation - will evaluate how new diagnostic tests perform in hospitals, general practices and care homes.
Tests being used to detect Covid-19 at the moment can take 72 hours to give results.