Covid restrictions in Glasgow could be eased if the number of people in intensive care does not go up, Scotland’s health secretary Humza Yousaf (pictured) has told the BBC’s Sunday Show. Glasgow is the only part of Scotland still in level three where it will remain until Friday at least, drawing criticism from trade and hospitality bodies and the industry as a whole.
He said that ministers wanted to ease restrictions as soon as possible but they felt that it was “absolutely necessary” to control the so-called Indian variant, which public health experts believe is driving increasing infection rates in the city, adding that “if we control it now then hopefully we will avoid future lockdowns in the months to come.”
He went on to say, “The really critical question is… does the new variant lead to more hospitalisations and more severe disease which then requires admissions into ICU?If the answer to that which I hope is no, then we can look at what we can do in terms of easing restrictions into the future.”
He commented that another reason why ministers had decided to keep Glasgow in level three for a further week was because they were trying to understand more about the variant. Glasgow is the only area in Scotland to remain in level three of Scotland’s coronavirus restrictions, with the highest coronavirus rates in the country at 126.7 per 100,000 people in the seven days to 19 May.
Public health expert, Professor Linda Bauld, said she was starting to see signs in the data that cases were declining in the city and that if this trajectory continued, she had optimism the city would go to level two in the future. .
People aged 18 to 39 who live in postcodes G41, G42, G5, G51 or G52 in the southside of Glasgow are also being offered jabs early to tackle surging cases.