Mon 29 Nov, 2021

Responding to the First Minister’s update on coronavirus this morning, Scottish Greens health spokesperson Gillian Mackay MSP said:

“The Scottish Greens have supported a cautious approach to handling the pandemic throughout and that remains our position.

“Detection of the new omicron variant in Scotland is clearly cause for concern, but it seems that a continued focus on testing, tracing, and isolating will remain key to keeping case numbers under control.

“I welcome the First Minister’s commitment to roll out additional testing in areas where cases of the new variant have been detected. I’m sure this will provide some reassurance to my constituents in Lanarkshire and those elsewhere who will understandably be concerned at the recent news.

“I also echo the call for people to make use of tests regularly, particularly before they socialise with others. Regular testing, mask wearing and working from home where possible are all measures that will play a key role in reducing the spread of the virus.

“I made the case for retaining PCR tests for incoming travellers when the government initially made the regrettable decision to drop this provision, so I am pleased that they have been reintroduced. Introducing a ‘day 8’ test in addition to the current ‘day 2’ requirement is vital.

"Not only will this give us a clearer picture of the covid status of those entering the country, but it will ensure that we are able to identify the movement of different variants of concern, as people enter the country, through genomic sequencing in a way that cannot be done with lateral flow tests.”

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