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Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: The latest updates on Wednesday
Last updated: Wednesday, 23 September, 2020, 12:49
- Highest number of cases recorded in a single day: 486
- Two further Covid deaths in Scotland in past 24 hours
- 224 new cases in NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde area
- Hundreds of Dundee students to self-isolate
Prof Leitch urges students to take four steps to stop Covid spread
Scotland’s clinical director Professor Jason Leitch urged students to take four steps to stop the spread of the virus.
Prof Leitch asked those at university to follow the Facts guidance, download the Protect Scotland app, ensure they self-isolate if asked and not host or go to house parties.
The national clinical adviser said he spoke to Scotland’s student leaders on Tuesday to inform them of how they can support students.
Sturgeon: Scotland should not be ‘hamstring’ by UK Government
Nicola Sturgeon said Scotland should not be “hamstrung” when tackling coronavirus by the UK Government.
After reiterating her belief that, should Scotland have the borrowing powers to continue the furlough scheme, measures put in place on hospitality businesses may have been stronger, the First Minister said she would be writing to the Prime Minister on the issue asking for an extension of the scheme or an extension of powers to the devolved administrations.
She said: “We mustn’t be hamstrung in essential public health decisions by the lack of necessary economic mitigations.
“All four UK nations agreed a joint statement to the effect that we would focus our efforts ‘on suppressing the virus to the lowest possible level and keeping it there’ and that is really positive.
“It puts aside forever the idea that we can just let this virus run, because we know it does real damage in lives and in health.”
Ms Sturgeon added: “There is an argument… that all of us across the UK should actually be doing even more right now and there is a danger that what starts to hold us back is not the public health analysis but financial limitations.”
Nicola Sturgeon points out local councils have powers to close premises if they are not complying with the rules
'If we need to strengthen our guidance, we will," says Nicola Sturgeon.
Nicola Sturgeon points out risks of student life
Addressing recent reports of coronavirus clusters at universities, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said that student life lends itself to spreading the virus.
She said that “tough guidance” was currently in place and discussions were ongoing about what may be needed.
Appealing directly to students, the First Minister said: “If you are asked to self-isolate, and I know many of you are already in that position, it is really important that you follow that advice.”
She added: “From me, for now, please know that we appreciate the sacrifices you’re making at this really important stage of your lives.
“It’s not yesterday that I was at university, but I still remember what an important stage of life it is and nobody wants you to be living under these restrictions, but it is important that you take care not put yourselves at risk and obviously not to inadvertently put other people at risk.
“What we’re asking you to do now is for the collective good of everyone but we do appreciate your sacrifices and thank you for it.”
The First Minister points out there is a significant outbreak at the University of Glasgow.
Latest Scottish Government figures revealed
A total of 486 people have tested positive for coronavirus in Scotland in the past 24 hours, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said – the highest number of cases recorded in a single day in Scotland.
Speaking at the Scottish Government’s daily briefing, Ms Sturgeon said two deaths of confirmed Covid-19 patients have been recorded in the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of fatalities to 2,508.
She said 25,495 people have now tested positive in Scotland, up from 25,009 the day before.
This is 7.8% of newly-tested individuals, up from 7.6% yesterday.
Of the new cases, 224 are in Greater Glasgow and Clyde, 107 in Lanarkshire and 57 in Lothian.
There are 83 people in hospital confirmed to have the virus, up by 10 in 24 hours.
Of these patients, 10 were in intensive care, no change on yesterday.
The total number of positive cases in Scotland reaches 25,495.
Nicola Sturgeon news briefing LIVE: Highest number of cases recorded in a single day: 486. Two further deaths registered.
Scottish Covid-19 death toll reaches 4,246, according to NRS stats
A total of 4,247 deaths have been linked to Covid-19 in Scotland, according to The National Records of Scotland (NRS).
The NRS figures indicate that 11 people died in the week ending 20 September.
The figures are higher than the daily figure announced by the Scottish Government as they include all cases where Covid-19 is mentioned on a death certificate - even if the patient had not been tested.
Isle of May Bird Observatory closes due to Covid
Scotland’s oldest bird observatory has announced it is closing for the remainder of the season due to the coronavirus crisis.
The Isle of May Bird Observatory shared the news on its Twitter account: "Sad to announce, due to recent covid guidance, that we are closing for remainder of the season. Lets hope 2021 brings better luck for coverage!"
Government playing ‘blame game’ with public on coronavirus measures, says expert
Boris Johnson’s Government is engaged in a “blame game” with the public when it comes to dealing with coronavirus, a public health expert has said.
The “punitive message” coming from Westminster around new fines for rule-breakers is the latest element and is “problematic” in terms of messaging, Professor Linda Bauld said.
It comes after the public was blamed for “wanting too many tests”, a focus on the behaviour of young people, and an encouragement to eat out and return to the office to support the economy, she said.
Prof Bauld told the PA news agency: “The blame game is a) ‘too many people requesting testing’, b) ‘young people are irresponsible and look at all the cases in that age group’, and c) ‘everybody needs to follow the rules, if you don’t we’re going to fine you and now we’re increasing the fines’.”
Fife primary school closed due to Covid-19 outbreak
Sinclairtown Primary School in Kirkcaldy has been closed following a small outbreak of coronavirus.
On Sunday, it was reported that an individual linked to the Fife school was self-isolating at home after testing positive for Covid-19.
All confirmed cases have mild symptoms and are currently isolating at home.
A statement from NHS Fife said: "Contact tracers from the Test and Protect Team are in the process of identifying and tracing the known contacts of the positive cases to provide public health support and advice.
"As a precaution, all children at Sinclairtown Primary School have been asked to stay off school today (23/09) while NHS Fife’s Public Health Team carries out a thorough risk assessment and examines any potential link between the positive cases."
Half of Brits thought pandemic would last less than six months
More than 50% of people thought life would be back to normal within six months when the UK first went into lockdown, a new report has found.
But the latest data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that by late August more than a third of those surveyed said the pandemic would last more than a year.
On April 1, 52% of people said they thought life would be back to normal in less than six months compared to nearly 11% who said it would be more than a year.
But by August 28 the proportion who felt it would be less than six months had fallen to 14%, while 37% said it would be more than 12 months.
The data, published on Wednesday, comes from the weekly Opinions and Lifestyle Survey.
Wednesday’s Scottish Government coronavirus briefing
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will hold a virtual coronavirus briefing at 12.15pm with national clinical director Jason Leitch.