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Covid in Scotland: More than one in 20 people have infection and isolation period to decrease to seven days

© PAFirst Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon receives her booster jab of the coronavirus vaccine in Glasgow.
First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon receives her booster jab of the coronavirus vaccine in Glasgow.

At least one in 20 people in Scotland have Covid-19, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced, as current isolation measures are to be reduced from midnight tonight.

The First Minister said all other existing Covid rules will stay in place and will probably remain until January 17.

The self-isolation period for Covid cases is to be cut from 10 days to seven, if people record two negative tests and have no symptoms.

Sturgeon said the two changes will come into affect: “…as long as you, firstly, have no fever and, secondly, you record two negative lateral flow tests, one no earlier than day six after testing positive – and another at least 24 hours later.

“The second change applies to close contacts of positive cases – including household contacts – who are either under the age of 18 years, four months, or who are older than that and fully vaccinated.

“By ‘fully vaccinated’, we mean first, second and booster or third doses.”

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The requirement for fully vaccinated household contacts to self-isolate will be replaced by taking lateral flow tests every day for the seven days of isolation.

This is already the case in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The change comes as the First Minister said the NHS is facing staff shortages due to an isolating work force.

A further 16,103 positive cases reported in Scotland today, 1,223 people are in hospital with Covid, with 42 people in intensive care.

Five further deaths have been reported.

Sturgeon has encouraged anyone still unvaccinated to get their jag. She said: “If you are one of those not yet vaccinated, for your own sake and the sake of all of us, please rectify that.

“It is not too late – and no one will judge you for not having done it before now. On the contrary, you will be welcomed with open arms.”