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On 100th day of lockdown, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon says: 'We now have a genuine chance to come as close as it is possible to get to eliminating this virus in Scotland'


By Scott Maclennan

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

Scotland has recorded its first confirmed deaths from Covid-19 in four days but the First Minister remains positive about the overall trend in cases.

Despite announcing three more recorded death, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was upbeat about the overarching trend in cases in today's Scottish Government briefing – taking place 100 days since lockdown was initially imposed.

“A total of 885 people are now in hospital with either confirmed or suspected Covid-19 – and that is actually an increase of 145 since yesterday, but I want to stress that the increase is all in suspected cases.

“The number of confirmed cases actually fell by three, so don't be too concerned by what appears to be a big headline increase.

“In the past 24 hours I'm sorry to say that three deaths were registered of patients having been confirmed through a test as having Covid-19 in Scotland, so the total number of deaths in Scotland under that measurement now stands at 2485.

“After four consecutive days without any deaths being registered under that measurement news of any deaths, though not unexpected, is also not what we want to hear.

“But it is still worth remembering and emphasising the overall trend in Scotland’s figures – on this day last week I announced four deaths which took the total for the previous seven days under our daily measurement to 23 deaths.

“The three deaths that I announced today takes that seven-day total to nine – so that is a sustained and significant ongoing reduction, and it is due to everybody."

She added: “Today marks the 100th day of lockdown.

"Two weeks after the start of lockdown in early April hospital admissions for the virus averaged over 200 admissions every single day.

“Two weeks after that Covid-19 deaths in Scotland, going by the wider National Records of Scotland data, averaged more than 90 every single day.

“Today, in our current position, with hospital admissions averaging just four a day, with consistently low numbers of new cases and with such a sharp reduction in death rates – all of that is massive and it is very welcome progress.

“I believe we now have a genuine chance to come as close as it is possible to get to eliminating this virus in Scotland.

“So this is a moment of great opportunity but it is also a time of very real danger – not to be negative but to be realistic and to seek to persuade you all that we still have to work very hard to make sure that the progress we have made in recent weeks is not lost or, even worse, reversed.

“Some of the reports we are seeing from elsewhere in the UK and around the world right now underline that point – lockdown restrictions have just been reimposed in Leicester in England as a result of increased transmission.

“We are seeing increases in infection rates in other countries – some American states for example and in Melbourne in Australia – and lockdown restrictions are being reimposed in these places too.

“My appeal to you today – and I cannot stress this enough – is do not drop your guard at this is a pivotal moment, do not become complacent, do not drift back to life exactly as normal, don't think that the risk of this virus has gone away, because it hasn't.

“Please make sure you're doing everything you can, every single day, every time you go out to deny this virus the chance to spread.”

News from Ross-shire


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