Fri 8 Jan, 2021

The Scottish Government must improve the support available to those who test positive for Covid-19 in order to increase the numbers of people self-isolating, Scottish Greens MSP Mark Ruskell has said.

Mr Ruskell, a member of the Scottish Parliament’s COVID-19 Committee, has called on the Scottish Government to widen the eligibility of its self-isolation support grant, to ensure everyone gets the support they need to self-isolate.

Mark Ruskell MSP said:

“Robust test, trace and isolate systems are essential to combatting Covid-19, yet the Scottish Government’s own figures suggest significant numbers of the population are failing to isolate once they develop symptoms.

“A failure to self-isolate means you risk transmitting the virus to everyone you come into contact with. But we know that isolation is challenging, and it’s therefore incumbent on the Scottish Government to provide all the support it can.

“The self-isolation support grant is a welcome initiative, but it’s eligibility criteria is incredibly narrow, meaning it simply doesn’t help enough people. The government has also failed to put in place the kind of wrap around supporting – providing hotel rooms and support with shopping – that other jurisdictions have.

“Until the bulk of the population is vaccinated we need to ensure that people are supported to self-isolate. It’s vital that the Scottish Government makes the self-isolation support grant available to everyone and reviews its whole support package to make self-isolation as straightforward as it possibly can be.”

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