Nicola Sturgeon could FINALLY cut Covid self-isolation period from 10 days to seven in Scotland TODAY after massive backlash from business
- Nicola Sturgeon scheduled to deliver a Covid update to MSPs at Holyrood today
- Expected to say whether she is cutting self-isolation period from 10 to 7 days
- England, Wales and Northern Ireland already reduced the quarantine period
Nicola Sturgeon is expected to announce today whether Scotland will follow the lead of England, Wales and Northern Ireland by cutting the coronavirus self-isolation period.
The Scottish First Minister has been under growing pressure to slash quarantine for people who test positive from 10 days to seven as critical services and businesses feel the strain caused by staff absences.
Ms Sturgeon has previously said the Scottish Government was still examining the issue and last week said she hoped to give an update early in the New Year.
Deputy First Minister John Swinney said yesterday that the government is ‘actively considering’ reducing the self-isolation period.
Ms Sturgeon will deliver a virtual Covid statement to MSPs at Holyrood this afternoon as the nation continues to be battered by a surge in Omicron cases.
Nicola Sturgeon is expected to announce today whether Scotland will follow the lead of England, Wales and Northern Ireland by cutting the coronavirus self-isolation period
The Scottish First Minister has been under growing pressure to slash quarantine for people who test positive from 10 days to seven as critical services and businesses feel the strain caused by staff absences
England slashed the quarantine period from 10 days to seven just before Christmas.
Wales and Northern Ireland then announced last week that they were doing the same, with people able to leave self-isolation subject to negative tests on days six and seven.
Ms Sturgeon has faced repeated calls to change the rules from Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross.
He said: ‘Scotland has the strictest self-isolation rules anywhere in the United Kingdom.
‘We understand the need for caution, but Nicola Sturgeon’s dithering and delaying is continuing to have a major impact on frontline services and the wider economy, due to the sheer numbers having to isolate.
‘She must finally confirm in her latest update that the period of isolation will be cut to seven days for those who have tested negative twice.’
Mr Ross’s comments were echoed by Scottish Labour deputy leader Jackie Baillie.
Ms Baillie, who is also the party’s health spokeswoman, said: ‘The SNP must use this update to confirm whether they will change self-isolation requirements in line with the latest evidence, to stop staff absences piling yet more pressure on businesses and services this winter.’
She also pushed for an increase in testing capacity after Scots faced trouble booking PCR tests over the festive period.
Ms Baillie said: ‘Scotland’s testing system is showing signs of considerable strain, leaving people across the country facing impossible decisions.
‘Before any new restrictions can be justified the Government must act to ensure our testing system is working properly and demonstrate the evidence that new rules would meet the unique challenges of Omicron.’
Speaking on BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme yesterday, Mr Swinney said: ‘Further details will be shared with Parliament in its virtual session on Wednesday.
‘We are obviously looking at the clinical advice that is crucial in the handling of this because, as I’ve indicated before in these discussions, we do not in any way, shape or form serve anybody’s interest if we ignore the clinical dimension of this issue and the risk of transmissibility of allowing individuals to return to the workplace if they’re still carrying the virus.’
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