Scotland records 123 new coronavirus cases

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The number of coronavirus cases in Scotland has risen by 123 in the last 24 hours.

The figure represents 1.5% of newly-tested individuals. A total of 19,728 people have now tested positive for Covid-19.

No deaths linked to the virus were registered since Friday so the total remains at 2,492.

Two people were in intensive care with coronavirus on Friday, and 246 with positive tests were in hospital.

Official figures showed that the biggest increase in cases by health board was 78 in NHS Tayside.

The area covers the 2 Sisters food processing plant in Coupar Angus which, by Friday, had been linked to 68 positive cases.

More than 600 workers at the plant have now been tested for the virus.

‘Follow advice’

Workers and those sharing a household with them, including children, have been told they must self-isolate until 31 August.

The plant was closed on Monday for two weeks while staff at the site were tested.

Nicola Sturgeon said the total increase of 123 positive cases was “of course a concern”.

However, the first minister said the figure “needs some context”.

Ms Sturgeon tweeted: “78 of them are in Tayside where we’re dealing with an outbreak at the 2 Sisters food processing plant. Important that all workers and household contacts follow advice to isolate.”

Numbers ‘likely to rise’

The next biggest 24-hour increase in positive tests by health board was Greater Glasgow and Clyde (+11), followed by Grampian and Lanarkshire (both +8) and Lothian (+6).

Figures for the week ending 22 August showed that of the 40,845 people newly tested, 439 cases proved to be positive.

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Prof Jason Leitch said there were no current plans for a local lockdown n Coupar Angus

National clinical director Prof Jason Leitch said the significant rise in new cases was to be expected.

He said: “Today, we have seen the highest number of confirmed cases in a few months with more than 100 positive cases. Around two thirds (78) of the new cases have been recorded in the Tayside area.

“While the figure may be alarming at first glance, this is to be expected as the Test and Protect team continue to work hard to test employees at the 2 Sisters factory and identify their close contacts, following the outbreak at the Coupar Angus site.

“We know that around 90% of the 78 new cases identified in Tayside today are linked to the outbreak at the 2 Sisters factory and we will likely continue to see these numbers rise in the next few days.”

Prof Leitch added that it was harder to manage the cases in the NHS Grampian area where sporadic clusters, linked to the night-time economy a few weeks ago, were still appearing and were more dispersed in the community.

He said that as the situation in Coupar Angus was more contained, there were no plans for a local lockdown. But he added that everything was being kept under review.

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