New powers to the Police to compel potentially infectious people to undergo COVID-19 screening and assessment are amongst a number of emergency powers included in a Coronavirus Bill introduced into the UK Parliament.
Here are some other areas it covers:
- New powers to cancel events
- Emergency Registration of Health Professionals
- Emergency Registration of Social Workers
- Compensation payments for emergency volunteers
- Death certificates
- Food Supply
- Statutory Sick Pay
- NHS pension schemes: suspension of restrictions on return to work
- Power to suspend port operations
- Courts and tribunals: use of video and audio technology
- Postponement of elections, referendums, recall petitions and canvass
This Act expires at the end of the period of 2 years beginning with the day on which it is passed.
The Scottish Government has welcomed the Bill which they say will enable them to respond more effectively to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Scotland’s Constitutional Minister, Michael Russell said:
“This Bill is the result of a great deal of intensive work between the UK Government and the devolved administrations and is required because of the extraordinary public health and economic challenges posed by the pandemic.
“The Scottish Government will recommend granting legislative consent.
“I should emphasise these measures are temporary and will only be used if required. I make a commitment that we will institute, after discussion across the Scottish Parliament, appropriate reporting on how and when the powers in the Bill have been used by the Scottish Government.”
Six deaths were announced yesterday,19th March, from COVID-19 in Scotland.
Scottish test numbers:19 March 2020
- 266 tests were positive
- 6 patients who tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) have died
- The total number of tests and negative results will be updated as soon as possible.
UK test numbers: 19 March 2020
- 3,269 were confirmed positive
- 61,352 were confirmed negative
- 144 patients who tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) have died.
- 64,621 people have been tested