Wed 10 Jun, 2020

The Scottish Government cannot wait for advice from the UK Government’s advisers, it needs to act on the evidence and stop the spread in our hospitals Alison Johnstone

The Scottish Government must not wait for the UK advisory body SAGE before introducing regular testing for frontline health workers for COVID-19, the Scottish Greens have said.

This morning at COVID committee Scotland’s interim CMO Gregor Smith said guidance on regular testing for hospital staff was weeks away, and revealed this had only been introduced for care home staff after SAGE had advised the Scottish Government to do it.

Scottish Greens health spokesperson and parliamentary co-leader Alison Johnstone proposed regular testing of all front-line staff in April, citing global evidence that people can spread the virus before showing symptoms. The Scottish Government has yet to commit to it, despite evidence that Coronavirus has spread in our hospitals

Alison Johnstone challenged the First Minister on the delay at FMQS.

Ms Johnstone said: “Today we have reports that nurses are angry and demoralised about the spread of the virus on their wards, then Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer reveals the only reason regular testing was supposedly introduced in care homes was because UK Government advisors told them to.

“Scotland has increased its capacity to test, front line workers are calling for regular testing, so ongoing delays to these decisions help nobody. The Scottish Government cannot wait for advice from the UK Government’s advisers, it needs to act on the evidence and stop the spread in our hospitals.”​

Get involved

More like this

Every family must be able to access childcare 

Thu 9 Jul, 2020

Responding to the First Minister’s statement this afternoon, Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader Alison Johnstone MSP called on the First Minister to ensure that every family has access to the childcare it needs. 

Alison Johnstone MSP said: 

“The announcement confirming the delayed rollout of 1140 hours of childcare came as a huge disappointment for parents. 

“For those using or seeking alternative childcare provision like childminders, restrictions on blended childcare are very challenging.

Early years delay will come as a blow to parents, say Greens 

Wed 8 Jul, 2020

Responding to the announcement that the implementation of 1,140 hours of free childcare could be delayed for a year, until August 2021, Scottish Greens Parliamentary Co-Leader Alison Johnstone MSP said: 

“While it’s understandable that the coronavirus crisis has had an impact on the rollout of 1,140 hours of childcare, the news that its introduction could be delayed by a whole year will come as a blow to parents. 

Well-resourced welfare fund essential say Scottish Greens

Tue 7 Jul, 2020

Scottish Greens today called on the Scottish Government to ensure that emergency welfare support is adequately funded, as new data showed increased demand for support.