LiveCoronavirus in Scotland LIVE: updates as scientists review impact of lockdown

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Updates on coronavirus in Scotland.

Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: latest updates on Scottish Covid-19 cases

Last updated: Tuesday, 14 April, 2020, 18:48

  • 6,358 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Scotland
  • A total of 615 deaths of people who tested positive for the disease
  • Panel of scientists set to review lockdown measures
  • OBR says 35% drop in GDP a "possible outcome" from 3 month lockdown

MSPs to take part in first ever "members' virtual question time" this Friday

MSPs will be able to quiz Scottish Government ministers via video link at the first ever "members' virtual question time" this Friday.

It will follow the second virtual leaders' question time on Thursday, where opposition leaders can ask the First Minister questions.

On Friday, 19 MSPs will be able to put questions to four ministers involved with the Covid-19 response, including Health Secretary Jeanne Freeman.

Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh said it was important to maintain parliamentary scrutiny during the outbreak.

The coronavirus pandemic has infected almost 2 million people worldwide and more than 119,000 deaths have been recorded

Here is the latest on the situation from around the world:

ITALY: Book shops, stationery stores and shops selling baby clothes and supplies have been allowed to open nationwide, provided they could maintain the same social-distancing and sanitary measures required in supermarkets.

ITALY: The number of new positives tests in Italy is at the lowest level in a month. The civil protection agency reported 2,972 new cases of Covid-19 in the last 24 hours, the lowest number since March 13 when 2,547 cases were reported. Italy has registered a total 162,488 positives since the virus broke out on February 21. Deaths rose 2.9%, by 602 to 21,067.

SPAIN: The recorded death toll is now more than 18,000 after 567 more people succumbed to Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, a number slightly higher than Monday's but below most daily increases in the past two weeks.

CHINA: China has reported 89 new virus cases, 86 of them among travellers arriving from abroad, but no new deaths. It has confirmed 3,341 deaths out of 82,249 official cases of infections.

SOUTH KOREA: South Korea has reported 27 fresh cases as infections continued to wane in the worst-hit city of Daegu and nearby towns. South Korea's totals are 10,564 infections and 222 virus-related deaths.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak rejects claims firms have been told to favour England over parts of UK with PPE provision

Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Public Health England's Yvonne Doyle have rejected claims that firms had been told to restrict supplies of personal protective equipment (PPE) to other parts of the United Kingdom in favour of England.

Mr Sunak said: "There's no truth in those stories, that those companies had been told to prioritise PPE equipment.

"Rather, the contrary is actually happening... there has been incredibly close collaboration between our four nations in this regard."

Professor Doyle said: "Public Health England has not, in any sense, directed any of the devolved administrations to be at any disadvantage.

"We work really closely together."

'More than one in five' deaths in England and Wales now linked to coronavirus

More than one in five deaths recorded in England and Wales are now linked to coronavirus, new figures show.

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows Covid-19 was mentioned on 3,475 death certificates in the week ending April 3, including hospital, care home and community deaths.

This means coronavirus has pushed the death toll in England and Wales to its highest level since official weekly figures began in 2005.

And the Department of Health said 12,107 patients have died in hospital after testing positive for the virus in the UK as of 5pm on Monday, up 778 from the previous day's total, while confirmed cases reached 93,873.

Second Scottish prisoner dies after contracting COVID-19

An inmate who died after contracting coronavirus has become the second Scottish prisoner to die from Covid-19.

Double-killer Frances McCarthy was serving time in HMP Low Moss when he died as a result of complications from the virus. 

A Scottish Prison Service spokesperson said the police have been informed and the matter reported to the Procurator Fiscal.

This Morning presenter speaks out about 5G conspiracy

Alice Beer has said she still thinks the conspiracy theory that 5G is spreading coronavirus is "nonsense and should be quashed."

Her tweet comes after her fellow presenter This Morning, Eamonn Holmes, said denial of the theory in the mainstream media "suits the state narrative."

He now faces an investigation by Ofcom after the TV regulator received more than 400 complaints about the episode of This Morning.

Press conference focuses on mental health

The First Minister's press conference focused on mental health today, acknowledging the impact the lockdown is having on people's emotional well-being.

Dr John Mitchell, a consultant psychiatrist and senior adviser to the government, joined Ms Sturgeon at the podiums.

"We are all in this experience together," Dr Mitchell told viewers, "it's never been more important to think about mental health."

Dr Mitchell advised people to try the following:

  • Keep in touch with friends and family
  • Stick to a routine and maintain a good sleeping pattern
  • Take a break from the news if you think it is getting on top of you
  • Keep in mind and positives you can think of
  • Remember that there are plenty of matters that you still control

Downing Street denies it has been diverting PPE from Scottish care homes

Number 10 has denied reports that the UK Government has played a role in supplies of PPE being diverted away from Scotland. 

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “Through this four nation approach, we’re working closely with the devolved administrations to coordinate the distribution of PPE evenly across the UK. 

We have not instructed any company to prioritise PPE for one nation over the others, so that is a flat no.” 

Lockdown will not be lifted imminently

The First Minister has said that coronavirus restrictions will not be phased out yet.

Ms Sturgeon said SAGE, the UK's scientific advisory panel, was in the process of reviewing the lockdown measures.

Yesterday she said that there were "early optimistic signs" that the lockdown was working, but warned against the idea of ending restirctions too quickly.

Birdsong in Edinburgh's Victoria Street

Confusion over PPE diversion claims

There is some confusion over the Scottish government's response to claims that personal protective equipment bound for care facilities in Scotland is being diverted to England.

Earlier today, National Clinical Director, Professor Jason Leitch, said the claims were "rubbish" in an interview with Good Morning Scotland.

But in her daily press conference, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon seemed to contradict Professor Leitch, saying she took the claims seriously.

She said her ministers were investigating the claims, and that her Health Secretary, Jeane Freeman had contacted Matt Hancock for clarification.

FM: It would be "unconscionable" if PPE is being diverted to England

Ms Sturgeon said her ministers are "urgently" investigating claims that PPE is being diverted to England instead of Scotland.

The First Minister said she did not think this was being orchestrated by NHS England, but said her government was "seeking assurances" from Westminster.

Scottish Health Secretary Jeane Freeman told reporters that Health Secretary Matt Hancock had cancelled their planned call today.

She said she had written to him about the claims, and made clear to him tha she did not have her permission to centralise supplies of PPE in the UK.

First Minister on care home infections

Care homes are a cause of concern for us."

Nicola Sturgeon

The Scottish government is set to publish data on deaths in care homes tomorrow.

It comes after reports that more than 400 care facilities in Scotland have confirmed cases of Covid-19

Nicola Sturgeon briefing - the key points

Key points:

  • 615 confirmed deaths
  • 6,358 confirmed infections
  • 1,798 hospitalisations
  • 196 people in ICU

OBR suggests 3 month lockdown scenario could leave 2 million unemployed

The Office for Budget Responsibility has released results of a "coronavirus scenario" that show the possible effects of a 3-month shutdown.

The figures suggested one possible outcome was a 35% fall in GDP, and more than 2 million people left unemployed.

The OBR insists that these figures are not a forecast, but one of a number of possible outcomes.

Updates to follow.

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