Seven things we learned today from Nicola Sturgeon’s Covid briefing –

Seven things we learned today from Nicola Sturgeon’s Covid briefing –

The Prime Minister briefed MSPs on the coronavirus pandemic in Scotland on Tuesday afternoon.

This week Nicola Sturgeon went on to present the latest assessment of Covid data and impact.

In his speech, the Prime Minister referred to the latest data, including intensive care statistics, and the changes made to the way in which daily statistics are published.

He also talked about the availability of the vaccine and the Omicron subtype, which is under constant surveillance, providing an update on guidelines for schools and early childhood.

Here are the key points of the Prime Minister’s speech today.

1. Case numbers “remain generally stable” as basic precautions are maintained.

The Prime Minister began by referring to daily statistics. In the past 24 hours, a total of 6,630 people have tested positive for the virus. While another 14 people who tested positive died, the total death toll rose to 10,477.

Yesterday 950 people were hospitalized, 8 fewer than the day before.

In total, 31 people are in intensive care, five fewer than yesterday. This includes 13 patients who remained in the intensive care unit for more than 28 days.

With the latest data, Sturgeon said the figures for the past two weeks have remained “generally stable”.

He said: “Over the past two weeks, the number of cases has generally remained stable.

“Last week I reported that cases had increased slightly – by around 2% – from the previous 7 days.

In contrast, in the past week, the number of reported cases has again decreased by 5% from around 7,400 cases per day to just over 7,000.

“While this continues an overall positive trend, it is important to note that it masks some important differences between different age groups.

“Among the under 15 age group, there has been more than a quarter of a decrease in the past week, although cases have increased in the past few weeks but have decreased overall.

“In addition, cases in the 25-44 age group decreased by 6% and by more than 10% in those aged 75 and over.

“However, cases recorded in other age groups have increased in the past week. The greatest increase – over 50% – was found in the 15-24 age group.

“As I have noted in the past few weeks, it was likely that we would see an increase in cases following the return to work and school after Christmas and, more recently, the lifting of the quarantine measures. infection.

2. The pressure on hospitals is easing

The prime minister said the number of people in intensive care is currently the lowest since July 2020, which is part of the “positive trend” in numbers.

He also explained that, as part of this “positive trend”, general acceptance has once again declined.

“In mid-January, more than 1,500 people were hospitalized with Covid. This number, which this time dropped slightly below 1,200 last week, fell back to below 1000 today.

The number of people with Covid in intensive care has also decreased, from the last peak of 70 in January to 42 on Tuesday and 31 today. In fact, the number of ICU patients is at its lowest since the beginning of July last year.

Fortunately, we are also starting to see a decline in the number of human deaths from Covid. ”

3. The statistics of the weekend to be interrupted.

The Scottish government’s usual practice of broadcasting Covid statistics was consistent throughout most of the pandemic.

Currently, daily data including the total number of cases, deaths, hospital admissions including intensive care and vaccine distribution are published at 2:00 pm each day.

However, Ms Sturgeon announced that there will be a change in the “pace of reporting” data starting this week.

After this weekend, the daily stats will not be released on weekends. Next Monday, future data for Saturday and Sunday will be announced.

However, he also said it would be re-released if needed.

4. Sub-variant BA.2 controlled

The Omicron sub-variant, known as BA.2, is still around, but Nicola Sturgeon said “there are no major concerns” at this time.

Last week, 26 cases of the subtype were confirmed and it has now risen to 103.

But evidence suggests the variant is more Delta-like and not as severe as Omicron.

Ms Sturgeon said: “It is encouraging, at this stage there is no evidence that the disease caused by the BA.2 subtype is more severe than the disease caused by the primary variant of Omicron.

“It also does not appear to be able to recover from the immunity provided by the vaccine or from a previous infection.

“However, there is currently evidence from multiple countries that BA.2 has a growth advantage over the primary variant of Omicron, which could mean it is more contagious.

“But overall, there is no reason to be significantly concerned about BA.2 at this stage and there is no reason to change our approach in response to it. However, we will continue to monitor closely.

5. New frame released on February 22nd

Sturgeon announced that the new framework, aimed at helping Scotland deal with Covid in a more “sustainable and less restrictive” way, will be released on February 22.

“The continued use of the vaccine in our efforts against Covid will be an important part of an updated strategic framework that will further define our approach to managing Covid in a more sustainable and less restrictive way. pandemic and virus I hope it becomes endemic.

“We continue to engage in a number of interests related to the content of the framework.

“However, I can confirm today that we plan to release on February 22, right after the February holidays.

“Parliament will then have the opportunity to discuss and vote on this.

“Almost two years after this ordeal, I know that the further upheaval of our lives after a brief return to normal is not what we wanted.

“What we want and want is a sustainable return to normality. This is what the updated strategic framework aims to support.

6. Work from home

Work-from-home guidance will start to get easier in Scotland and most employers are being asked to consider a hybrid home-office approach.

The Prime Minister has made no changes to the recommendation. However, Sturgeon said employers should pay attention to advice given to high-risk workers as the Scottish government has announced it is making recommendations on the matter.

7. School orientation and masks.

The prime minister said the secondary education advisory group would meet today to discuss the issue.

The meeting will discuss whether secondary school students will continue to be required to cover their faces in class before students return after the February break.

Sturgeon said: “The Scottish Government will carefully consider other recommendations provided by the sub-group and will approve decisions as soon as possible and before returning to school after the February break.”

Source: Herald Scotland