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Covid-19 cluster identified at care home as no new deaths reported in five days

Nicola Sturgeon said of the 19 new coronavirus cases recorded on Sunday, 12 were in Glasgow – seven at the same care home.

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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon spoke at the Scottish Government’s coronavirus briefing (Jeff J Mitchell/PA)

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon spoke at the Scottish Government’s coronavirus briefing (Jeff J Mitchell/PA)

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon spoke at the Scottish Government’s coronavirus briefing (Jeff J Mitchell/PA)

A cluster of coronavirus cases has been identified at a care home in Glasgow, Nicola Sturgeon has announced.

Speaking at the Scottish Government’s briefing on Monday, the First Minister said of the 19 new cases announced on Sunday, 12 were in Glasgow and more than a quarter – seven – were from the care home.

She did not name the home or say whether the positive tests involved residents or staff but said the cases were asymptomatic.

Sunday was the second consecutive day when new cases in Scotland were higher than they had been for several weeks – but no new deaths have been recorded for five days in a row.

It followed further easing of the lockdown, such as outdoor hospitality resuming on Wednesday and households being able to meet indoors on Friday.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman confirmed reports from Scottish Care that some GPs and directors of public health have refused to test people going into care homes, against the Scottish Government’s policy.

“The guidance and the requirement is crystal clear on this,” Ms Freeman said.

“If you are to be admitted to a care home, unless there is a clinical reason not to do this, then there should be one negative test before that admission and then the individual needs to be nursed and looked after in their own room in isolation for the 14 days to be absolutely sure that – even with a negative test – no symptoms are going to be developed.”

Ms Sturgeon said of the cluster: “That is being looked at in much greater detail and all necessary follow-up tests, checks and precautions are being undertaken.”

The First Minister announced six people across Scotland tested positive for coronavirus between Sunday and Monday, taking the total to 18,365, but stressed extended hours enabling deaths to be registered at the weekend are now changing.

A total of 2,490 patients have died in Scotland after testing positive for Covid-19, no change on the previous day.

Some 550 patients are in hospital with confirmed or suspected Covid-19.

Of these, six were in intensive care, no change in the past 24 hours.

The First Minister spoke as further lockdown changes came into force across Scotland on Monday, including hospitals allowing a designated visitor for non-coronavirus patients, shopping centres fully reopening and children being able to play contact sports outdoors.

She told the briefing: “Today indoor shopping malls have opened up, organised outdoor sport and play measures for children and some routine dental treatment has restarted.

“As these services reopen and as we all leave the house a bit more than has been the case over the past few months, it becomes ever more important that we take the basic steps to avoid the virus spreading again.”

Compliance with new regulations making face coverings mandatory in shops – which came into force on Friday – is “extremely high indeed”, she said.

“It is what I would have expected but nevertheless it is still welcome,” she added.

Our very strong advice, as you know, is to avoid crowded places, whether they’re outdoors or indoorsNicola Sturgeon

While face coverings are currently mandatory in shops and on public transport, Ms Sturgeon added they can be used in other indoor spaces when social distancing cannot be adhered to and should be used in communal areas of shopping centres.

She also reiterated her call for people not to gather in large groups or to go to places that are busy.

A road in the Trossachs was forced to close over the weekend due to parked cars making it impassable.

Ms Sturgeon said: “We’re asking you to please use your common sense – if car parks are full, move on, if places look busy then also move on.

“Our very strong advice, as you know, is to avoid crowded places, whether they’re outdoors or indoors.”

She said there had been concerns raised with her about “large numbers of people wild camping”.

With campsites are set to fully reopen on Wednesday, she said: “If you do intend to use them over the next few weeks, our advice is to book ahead, not simply turn up.”

PA