The cumulative total of Covid Cases in Orkney is now at 3,571.
The stats for Scotland published on 3rd March 2022 are as follows:
- 9,491 new cases of COVID-19 reported.
- 36 new reported deaths of people who have tested positive
- 16 people were in intensive care yesterday with recently confirmed COVID-19
- 1,272 people were in hospital yesterday with recently confirmed COVID-19
- 4,437,162 people have received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccination, 4,159,556 have received their second dose, and 3,440,493 have received a third dose or booster
- get the vaccine or the vaccine booster
- take lateral flow tests twice a week, and if visiting someone vulnerable or visting a crowded place – get lateral flow tests
- follow the guidance on self-isolating and booking a test
- wear a face covering where required
- if mixing with others, try to gather in small groups only
- wash your hands regularly and cover your nose and mouth if coughing or sneezing
- open windows when meeting indoors
- a mixture of home and office working is allowed
- use the apps: COVID status, Protect Scotland and Check-in Scotland
In this context it is disappointing that the NHS Orkney in their Covid update from today (https://www.ohb.scot.nhs.uk/news/covid-update-3-march-2022) completely neglects to remind of mask use.
Washing hands certainly does now need a renewed focus since there appears to be evidence that Omicron can remain viable for longer on surfaces than previous variants.
Vaccinations also still make sense, because there are not only mild, new or evasive variants around.
Antiviral medication is a feasible option for some, but not for everybody. At least this is pointed out correctly.
But opening doors and windows… today?! Unrealistic and naive to assume that during socialising indoors windows and doors can be kept open for longer periods. People will try to keep the now very costly warmth in the houses… and might not want a broken window.
As important ventilation is, there are times when this is tricky. A well fitted mask however, can be used indoors by most people.
What on earth is the issue, the NHS (in all UK nations) has with proper masks? Why is this advice missing? Is the effort still too big to train the public (and staff for that matter!) how to use them correctly? Is it a financial issue that made some kind of ‘triage allocation’ of masks by grades necessary, within the NHS and subsequently inevitably in the wider public as well, despite the awareness of the associated risks of substandard and low level infection prevention & control measures?
And why is NHSO reluctant to simply issue the advice to voluntarily reduce mingling? This is not a restriction, if it comes as a recommendation in times of high infection rates. Not giving this recommendation and just hoping for common sense, constitutes negligence. People are more likely to listen to NHS advice than well-meant advice from others.
This virus is quite active and changing all the time. And we should not forget that even with new rare strains, the UK apparently is “attending the party” early… first come, first serve? Anyway, some interesting information found in this paper from New Zealand (https://www.health.govt.nz/system/files/documents/pages/22_february_2022_-_variants_update.pdf).