A clear alert has been given by NICOLA Sturgeon that since the pandemic started “the next few weeks could be the most dangerous we have ever experienced”
The First Minister’s call for caution comes as Scotland has registered 2,539 new cases of coronavirus in the last 24 hours – while Hogmanay has confirmed 2,622 new cases.
Ms Sturgeon cautioned that the virus’s latest mutant form, which is considered to be the “dominant” strain in Scotland, means that case numbers are likely to remain high.
Schools warn of the new ‘dominant’ mutant Covid strain in Scotland
42.8% of Scottish cases were confirmed on Friday to be the latest Covid-19 variant, a dramatic rise from just six percent at the end of November.
It is assumed that the current strain is up to 70 percent more transmissible than the original Covid-19 strain.
The vaccine cavalcade is on its way and provides real hope for 2021, Ms. Sturgeon said.
But the next few weeks, with this new variant, may be the most dangerous we have seen since March/April.
“We must act together to suppress it to save lives and protect the NHS. Stay tuned.”
Coronavirus: all Scots over 50 to be spring vaccinated
The First Minister emphasized that the 2,539 new cases “are again worryingly high,” while encouraging Scots not to follow the laws of public health in wishing people a Happy New Year.
She said, “The new variant is speeding up its propagation. Please do not visit the homes of other people right now, even today.”
“If you visit someone’s home on foot for the first time today, or hug/kiss/shake hands HNY, you are putting yourself, others and the NHS at risk.”
A recent research by Imperial College in London has found that the new version is “enormously” transmissible.
Professor Axel Gandy cautioned that the difference is “quite extreme.” between the two strains.
“He added: “In how quickly the viral version spreads, there is a big difference.
“We are now seeing that the new virus has increased infectivity across all age groups.”