Scotland could be coronavirus-free ‘by end of summer’, claims Edinburgh professor

There were no confirmed deaths from the virus on Friday or Saturday.

Scotland could be set to completely eliminate coronavirus by the end of the summer, an Edinburgh University professor has claimed.

Professor Devi Sridhar, an expert in public health who sits on the Scottish government’s Covid-19 advisory group, said the continuing decline in new cases of the disease was promising.

Sign up to our public interest bulletins - get the latest news on the Coronavirus

Sign up to our public interest bulletins - get the latest news on the Coronavirus

There were just nine new positive cases on Wednesday, and five on Thursday, according to the Scottish government.

Scotland could be set to completely eliminate coronavirus by the end of the summer, an Edinburgh University professor has claimed.

And there were no confirmed deaths from Covid-19 in Scotland on Friday or Saturday.

Prof Sridhar told the BBC, that as long as cases stayed at a low level, and contact tracing was effective: "I think for me that's pretty much a Covid-free Scotland.

“At that point the risk to people's daily lives becomes negligible.

"I think Scotland is on track to eliminate coronavirus by the end of the summer by looking at the rate of the decrease.

"But we are going to see little bumps, so it's a question of how small can you keep those bumps."

She said the new challenge would be to stop new cases from entering the country.

"If Scotland was an island - like New Zealand - I would say going for zero cases would be completely feasible," she said.

But with hundreds of cases still be reported each day in England, the open border presents a reach challenge.

"Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland are trying to work together on a memorandum of understanding, or a plan [regarding their border]," said Prof Sridhar.

"Such a plan would be optimal, but that's for the politicians to work out."

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this story on our website. While I have your attention, I also have an important request to make of you.

The dramatic events of 2020 are having a major impact on many of our advertisers - and consequently the revenue we receive. We are now more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism.

Subscribe to scotsman.com and enjoy unlimited access to Scottish news and information online and on our app. Visit https://www.scotsman.com/subscriptions now to sign up.

By supporting us, we are able to support you in providing trusted, fact-checked content for this website.

Joy Yates

Editorial Director

 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.