Covid Scotland: Coastguard praised for delivering tests from Barra

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Coastguard rescue teams on the Western Isles have been praised for their help transporting Covid-19 tests.

The coastguard teams from Barra, Lochboisdale, Stornoway and Harris provided essential service in collecting Covid-19 tests from Barra, and helping them make their way to the testing centre in Stornoway.

The islands of Barra and Vatersay are both in lockdown after a significant outbreak of Covid-19 has infected more than 40  people.

 Nicola Sturgeon puts Barra and Vatersay into level 4 lockdown

NHS Western Isles Chief Executive, Gordon Jamieson, said: “Coastguard teams have been invaluable in the Western Isles’ response to Covid-19 from day one, as key members of our Pandemic Response Group.”

Murdo Macaulay, HM Coastguard operations area commander for the Western Isles, Skye and Lochaber, said: “Our volunteers are working really hard to help make what can be quite a difficult logistical challenge, in terms of transporting tests between Islands due to distance and infrastructure, far more manageable and done as quickly and efficiently as possible.

21/1/21: Latest update from NHSWI Chief Exec Gordon Jamieson. No new cases of #COVID19 in the WI. We did have a challenge with getting our tests from Barra to Stornoway, but thanks to Emergency partner agencies providing mutual aid, they arrived safely & no positive results. pic.twitter.com/crYYqyITXf
— NHS Western Isles (@NHSWI) January 21, 2021

In a statement on Facebook last night, Jamieson stated there were no new cases of Covid-19 in the Western Isles, including the outbreak on Barra.

Unforeseen ferry interruptions meant a delay in receiving tests from Barra yesterday but they have since arrived at the testing centre all have all been confirmed negative.

However, today one new case of Covid-19 has been registered in the Western Isles, bringing the 7 day total up to 51.

 Six key points as restrictions extended

Jamieson also drew attention to the Western Isles’ first mass vaccination clinic which is taking place at the Stornoway Sports Centre.

Around 450 vaccines were administered.

All but one individual showed up for their appointment.

In Scotland 358,454 people have now received the first dose of their vaccine, and 4,689 have received their second dose. 

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