Coronavirus in Scotland RECAP: First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announces schools to remain closed as lockdown extended

Live updates on Scotland’s Covid-19 pandemic response.

Keep up-to-date with the latest coronavirus developments in Scotland, the UK and around the world.

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Coronavirus in Scotland.

Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Key Events

  • Scotland’s schools will remain closed until mid-February
  • 1,165 new Covid cases and 71 further deaths on Tuesday
  • Island of Barra will be placed into lockdown from midnight
  • Lockdown measures extended until mid-February in Scotland
  • Scottish Government considering creation of ‘lockdown hotels’
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Nicola Sturgeon ‘not raising parents’ expectations’ ahead of statement on schools

Nicola Sturgeon has indicated that schools are unlikely to reopen in early February as she is set to announce the decision of a review of restrictions around schools to the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday.

The First Minister said she would not be drawn on the decision, which is due to be made by the Cabinet on Tuesday morning, but stressed she did not want to “raise anyone's expectations” that restrictions could be lifted.

All schools are currently closed to all pupils – apart from children of key workers – until at least January 29.

The Scottish Government has regularly said schools staying open is their top priority and Ms Sturgeon has said tougher restrictions may be the way to ensure they open sooner than otherwise possible.

Speaking at her daily coronavirus briefing on Monday, the First Minister said that “some positive signs” with case numbers were beginning to appear, but the level of community transmission was still high.

I am not going to raise parent’s expectations.

Nicola Sturgeon

She said: “I am not going to pre-empt a decision that we are going to take tomorrow.

"We will consider the position on schools as we said we would … and I will set out the conclusion on that.

"I am not going to raise parent’s expectations. You can see from the numbers that we are seeing some positive signs in the numbers that lockdown is starting to stabilise things and hopefully start to tip them into decline.

"But transmission is still higher than we would want it to be and therefore I am not going to raise anyone’s expectations about schools being back on February 1, but nor am I going to stand here and make assumptions about a decision we won’t actually take until tomorrow.

“In fairness to teachers, parents and young people, as soon as we have taken any decision tomorrow I will set that out to Parliament.”

When will Nicola Sturgeon be addressing Parliament?

While daily coronavirus briefings are held at 12.15pm from St Andrew’s House, Ms Sturgeon will be addressing Parliament this afternoon, at around 2pm.

On January 4, Ms Sturgeon announced schools would remain shut until at least January 29, leaving open the possibility they may reopen in the first week of February.

A review of that decision was undertaken yesterday, with a final decision to be made by the Cabinet this morning ahead of a statement to parliament at Holyrood.

Nearly a third of Covid patients ‘return to hospital within 5 months’

New research has found that almost a third of hospitalised coronavirus patients return to hospital within five months, while one in eight die.

A paramedic wearing full PPE unloads a patient from an ambulance outside the Royal London Hospital in east London.

The research, conducted by Leicester University and the Office for National Statistics (ONS), looked at the outcomes for 47,780 people who were hospitalised with coronavirus during the first wave.

Of this group, they found that 29.4 per cent returned to hospital within 140 days, with 12.3 per cent of the total patients dying.

The current cut-off for attributing a death to coronavirus is 28 days, so the findings may indicate that more people are dying of the disease than indicated by statistics.

Though experts have called the findings "important", the study was published on a  pre-print server and has not yet been peer-reviewed.

Read the full story.

The UK Health Secretary has confirmed this morning that he is self isolating after receiving an alert from the NHS Covid-19 app

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