Readers letters:

"How many people unnecessarily self-isolated and further false positives were created?”
Local resident Trish Lindsay takes a Covid test as Test Operative Ainhoa Lopez looks on. Photo: Greg Macvean Photography.Local resident Trish Lindsay takes a Covid test as Test Operative Ainhoa Lopez looks on. Photo: Greg Macvean Photography.
Local resident Trish Lindsay takes a Covid test as Test Operative Ainhoa Lopez looks on. Photo: Greg Macvean Photography.

Covid test change could have helped

I recently came across new government Covid guidance dated 16 February 2021. It indicates astonishing incompetence among our health advisors.

It says, “Following a substantial clinical review of the latest evidence and testing data, we are now changing the advice for retesting within 90 days of a positive. From now on, if someone tests positive with a PCR test they should not be tested using PCR or Rapid lateral flow for 90 days, unless they develop new symptoms”.

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I say incompetence because medical research findings going back to at least August 2020 indicate that this change could have been made much earlier.

Indeed, it was announced on 11 December that the period of self-isolation for Covid cases was to be reduced from 14 to 10 days and this change was based on similar research findings.

How many people unnecessarily self-isolated and how many further false positives were created before this 90-day rule was finally introduced?

Geoff Moore, Braeface Park, Alness.

Kids’ mental health needs big investment

As a coalition of leading providers of care and support we are concerned over a potential lost generation of vulnerable children and young people, whose mental health is being impacted even further by the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Waiting times for mental health treatment have dramatically increased during lockdown. In December 2020, for example, 14 per cent of children and young people had been waiting more than a year for specialist treatment, compared with 5.4 per cent in 2019.

A commitment by MSPs to focus on mental health, increasing investment in support services and intervention strategies, must be a priority for this parliament.

There is a compelling case for a radical new plan for our struggling mental health services and considerably greater resourcing.

This is a crisis we can overcome, but it will require a similar energy and commitment to that demonstrated for Covid-19 if we are to achieve this and prevent many young people giving up on their futures.

The Scottish Children’s Services Coalition, Edinburgh.

If polling policy ain't broke don't fix it

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How long will it take to check polling station identity cards? If it takes one minute per voter, the tenth voter in line will have to wait ten extra minutes to vote; 60th in line adds an hour. Who can do this on their way to work

How long will elderly voters have to stand in line outside the polling stations and will councils supply chairs, water plus possible medical assistance?

All to address a 'problem' that does not exist and we pay for this through increased council tax.

Doubtless the government thinks this won't deter Conservative voters as much as their opponents. Well, after spending an hour or more queuing up to vote due to the government's pointless new bureaucracy, I'll hardly feel like voting for them.

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They must drop this cynical, anti-democratic nonsense immediately.

Barry Tighe, Woodford Green, Essex.

No indy rerun, thanks

Like the rest of Scotland, we cast our vote at the “once in a generation” independence referendum seven years ago when Scotland decided ‘no’.

My husband and I do not wish for another one, creating yet more unpleasantness and dissension.

Mrs H Simpson, St Bernard's Crescent, Edinburgh.

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