A further 28 people have sadly died in Scotland who had tested positive for Covid 19.
Another positive case has also been confirmed in Orkney where the cumulative total is now at 32.
The number of people in hospital is at 1,117 with 85 in intensive care.
Tomorrow, Thursday, the Scottish Government will announce which tier each local area will be going into with Orkney expected to be at Level 1.
Orkney constituency MSP, LibDem, Liam McArthur has been pressing for even more easing of restrictions in the islands. Commenting on the tiers he said:
“Orkney looks set to be placed in level one, which should allow limited gatherings both indoors as well as outdoors. However, the First Minister has now confirmed that the ban on meeting indoors with other households will remain in place, even in level one areas.
“This will come as a real blow to many who had been hoping for some respite. Indeed, as we head into winter, expecting people to meet outdoors is increasingly unrealistic.
“I recognise the First Minister attempt to reassure islanders that this restriction would be kept under review and lifted as soon as possible. However, for the sake of public confidence and compliance, I would urge Nicola Sturgeon to look again at this aspect of the government’s approach”.
There has been a very good rate of compliance in Orkney with the public health measures put in place to keep everyone safe and to avoid the spread on the virus. Islanders are aware of the devastating impact it would have if the virus was to take hold in the community.
The best advice is still to follow FACTS
Hopefully testing on Orkney has a 24hr or less turnaround., and that Track and Trace is performing well. The fact that the odd case crops up now and again is a sign that the virus is still somehow active.
If there were no incoming infected people or goods and no new cases for a month the virus could be considered eradicated (as in NZ).
So long as travel and shipments to and from mainland (Aberdeen and Central Belt especially) continues this eradication is surely not achievable.
I do wonder about Royal Mail deliveries being a possible source of infection – but I suspect Track and Trace would find this impossible to establish.
It will be impossible to judge whether the 3 tier system will turn out better than the restrictions we have at the moment.
I am sceptical about a 24h turnaround, however would put my faith in local doctors and nurses, who – I would assume – probably are actively involved in tracking contacts, simply when speaking to their patient.
The shipments are not so much the problem, I guess. Everybody should know by now that surfaces can be contaminated and can take precautions when handling stuff.
Hauliers will still have to travel back and forth and I believe they should benefit not only from being equipped with PPE (if needed) but also from regular testing like others who cannot avoid contacts (such as care and NHS staff).
If everyone else would just finally realise that most other travel (for leisure, holidays etc.) is not only unnecessary but also – simply by increasing the number of people about – increases risks for the keyworkers who have no choice to be out and about.
I am perfectly ok with single adults wanting to sit with a friend in a cafe for a chat. Personally, I wouldn’t do it, because I belong to a generation where endless landline phone chats were normal and therefore I could resort to these good old-fashioned means of communication without any problems. It will be for a long time but it will not be forever.
However, I understand that this is not an option for everyone and some people feel perhaps lonely.
What I cannot understand, is the fuss of many because household-mixing otherwise is discouraged. Or family visits… whether in UK or abroad. Upcoming Xmas doesn’t change a thing. In fact, how guilty would I feel if I were to visit family for Xmas and my present to them would be the disease, picked up on the way?
The more ‘freedoms’ we want and the less we accept that these freedoms will not be gone forever but only be suspended for some time to come, the less we can protect others.
Some Asian countries accepted – in some cases quite drastic – infection control measures… we Western societies didn’t, we went out protesting, were lamenting about impacts on personal freedom, privacy, businesses, the economy etc.
Who is faring better? Whose economy is recovering and has taken far less of a hit?
When Orkney hasn’t had a positive case for three weeks, I will go and get my hair cut. By then, I should be able to stuff a cushion with the outcome!
But – but – but, I do so want to go to the Pier Arts Centre Christmas Exhibition.
But – but – but – “You can’t always get what you want – but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.”