LiveCoronavirus in Scotland RECAP: One further coronavirus patient death and 364 positive tests recorded

Live updates on Covid-19 in Scotland, the UK, and around the world.

Thursday, 8th April 2021, 6:27 am
Updated Thursday, 8th April 2021, 2:04 pm
Live updates on Covid-19 in Scotland, the UK, and around the world.

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Coronavirus in Scotland LIVE: The latest Covid-19 updates on Thursday, April 8

Last updated: Thursday, 08 April, 2021, 12:59

  • Scots react to receiving Moderna vaccine
  • 364 new Covid cases reported in Scotland
  • One Covid death recorded in Scotland
  • Possible delay to Scotland's Covid-19 vaccine programme

Scotland records one Covid death and 364 new cases

Scotland recorded one coronavirus patient death and 364 positive tests in the past 24 hours, the country’s national clinical director Jason Leitch has said.

It brings the death toll under this measure – of people who first tested positive for the virus within the previous 28 days – to 7,620.

Mr Leitch was speaking at a coronavirus briefing.

The figure is lower than the 9,997 deaths given earlier by the National Records of Scotland as they do not include suspected and probable coronavirus infections.

Latest NRS figures released

A total of 9,997 people have died in Scotland with confirmed or suspected coronavirus, according to the National Records of Scotland (NRS).

The figures show 38 deaths relating to Covid-19 were registered between March 29 and April 4, down 24 on the previous week.

Of these, the majority happened in hospital at 29, with four in care homes and five at home or in a non-institutional setting.

The statistics are published weekly and cover all deaths registered in Scotland where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.

They differ from the lab-confirmed coronavirus deaths announced daily by the Scottish Government because the NRS figures include suspected or probable cases of Covid-19.

Pandemic has caused food insecurity to increase, research finds

The Covid-19 pandemic has increased food insecurity across the UK, according to a new report.

Research by the University of the West of Scotland (UWS), in partnership with Oxfam, found rising need has been driven mainly by a reduction in income and income crises – affecting mostly those who were already on low incomes but also introducing new people to the realities of life with little money.

Meanwhile the cost of living rose and travel restrictions made it difficult for people to access food banks and cheaper shops.

The report also highlights the impact of lockdown on food aid and their “wrap-around” services, such as mental health support and benefit advice which were suspended due to the pandemic.

It states: “While rising food insecurity meant a rise of demand for food aid, food banks were forced either to close or to reorganise their operation in order to comply with social distancing and lockdown rules.

“Covid-19 and its shielding requirements meant that the many volunteers over 70 years of age could no longer support the running of food banks. This vital human resource was lost at the height of the crisis when it was needed most.”

Coronavirus in Scotland: Jason Leitch seeks to reassure public AstraZeneca vaccine is safe after blood clot link

Coronavirus in Scotland: Jason Leitch seeks to reassure public AstraZeneca vaccine is safe after blood clot link

Scotland’s National Clinical Director has sought to reassure the public the AstraZeneca Covid vaccine is safe after UK regulators said there is a possible link between the jab and “extremely rare” blood clots.

A total of 150,837 deaths have now occurred in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate, the ONS said.

UK-made AstraZeneca vaccines ‘shipped to Australia’

More than 700,000 doses of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine have been sent from the UK to Australia, according to reports.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock did not deny the reports in the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age about the shipment, despite the UK facing a squeeze on vaccine supplies.

The move comes with the UK, Australia and the European Union embroiled in rows over the export of vaccines.

The Australian news outlets reported that 717,000 UK-made doses have been flown in to help Scott Morrison’s government’s vaccination programme.

The first 300,000 UK-made doses landed at Sydney Airport on February 28, with a further large delivery on an Emirates passenger plane in March.

Mr Hancock did not dispute the reports but told Sky News: “We have made sure that we can get the jabs that we need here and that’s why we have the fastest rollout.”

He added: “In terms of what the companies do, these companies are manufacturing for all around the world and we source from everywhere in the world, so what I’m in control of, what matters for us as the UK Government, is making sure that we get the supplies that we have got contracted from the companies.”

But he said the UK Government itself did not send the doses.

Matt Hancock and scientists seek to reassure public over AstraZeneca jab

Matt Hancock and chief scientists are seeking to maintain public confidence in the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine after regulators pointed to a one in a million chance of dying from a rare blood clot.

The Health Secretary said everyone should take a vaccine when their time comes, and the risk of experiencing a brain clot was the same as “taking a long-haul flight”.

He urged the under-30s, who will be offered an alternative vaccine to AstraZeneca, to take a jab to protect loved ones and avoid the risk of long Covid, adding there were was “more than enough” Moderna and Pfizer for this age range.

In a round of broadcast interviews, Mr Hancock said vaccines are clearly breaking the link between Covid cases and deaths in the UK and were saving “thousands of lives”.

He told Sky News: “The number of people dying from Covid halved in the last nine days… and is down 90% from the peak.”

All vaccines in use in the UK were “safe for all ages”, but the “extremely rare” risk of suffering a rare brain blood clot, and the tipping of the balance of risk for the under-30s, means they could be given other jabs instead.

Asos sales soar 24% to nearly £2bn during latest lockdowns

Online fashion giant Asos has revealed that sales soared during the latest Covid-19 lockdown as high street stores remained closed.

Revenues at the retailer jumped 24% to £1.98 billion in the six months to the end of February, with pre-tax profits up 253% to £106.4 million.

The business said it benefited particularly from strong UK sales during the period – which covered the second English lockdown in November, the subsequent tiering and eventual third lockdown.

High street fashion rivals have been unable to open their doors throughout 2021 so far, but will be allowed to welcome back customers from next Monday.

In the UK, Asos sales were up 39% to £800.4 million, compared with 18% in the EU, 16% in the US and 16% in the rest of the world.

It said: “Overall we saw a net Covid-19 tailwind of £48.5 million – a benefit which we expect to reverse once we see restrictions lifted on the hospitality and tourism sectors.”

Matt Hancock insists Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is safe

Health Secretary Matt Hancock insisted the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine is safe for all ages.

He told Sky News: “All three vaccines that are in use in the UK are safe and they’re safe at all ages, but there’s a preference for the under-30s, if they want to have the Pfizer or Moderna jab, then they can.”

AstraZeneca: Possible delay to Scotland's Covid-19 vaccine programme as under 30s offered alternative

AstraZeneca: Possible delay to Scotland's Covid-19 vaccine programme as under 30s offered alternative

The Scottish Government is considering delays to the Covid-19 vaccination programme after a decision to offer under 30s an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine over a possible link to “extremely rare” blood clots.

Government-listed Covid test supplier criticised for ‘appalling’ service

Dozens of complaints have been made against a Covid-19 test supplier after quarantined travellers were left waiting several days for a kit to arrive.

East Yorkshire-based Latus Health has been accused of providing an “appalling” service, with customers claiming they received their £175 coronavirus tests late – potentially delaying their exit from quarantine.

The healthcare firm, which is on the Government’s official list of test suppliers, said there had been “some delays” with Royal Mail and that it pays for a 24-hour next day delivery service.

However, some 70 people have joined a Facebook group to complain about the firm, which is listed as a test provider on the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) website.

People returning to the UK from non-red list countries are required to quarantine for 10 days at home and take two Covid-19 tests – one on day two and another on day eight – before they can leave, depending on a negative result.

But customers who have ordered through Latus Health have complained of test kits arriving more than a week late, and further delays in receiving test results.

Scots react to receiving Moderna vaccine on first day of rollout

Scots have welcomed being among the first in the country to receive the new Moderna vaccine against coronavirus.

The vaccine was only delivered to Scotland at the start of the week with NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) becoming the first health board north of the border to roll out the first doses.

People who visited the vaccination centre at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow on Wednesday were given Moderna including Alistair McMaster.

The 55-year-old, whose mother received AstraZeneca, told the PA news agency: “It was fine, easy, no pain or anything.

“I asked what one it was and (the nurse) said it was the new one just tried out today for the first time – so a wee bit of a surprise, but worth a try.”

Sam Ferguson and Heather McGregor were also both surprised to find out they were also among the first.

Mr Ferguson, 52, said he had been talking to workmates who “were not sure” about AstraZeneca, admitting recent news “puts a doubt in your mind”.

Virus crisis prompts rethink on skills and careers, study suggests

Three out of five workers plan to learn new skills, gain qualifications or change their career altogether as a result of the Covid outbreak, a new study suggests.

Finance giant Aviva said its research also indicated that an increasing number of people want a job that involves helping others.

The most popular change people would like to introduce to their occupation is the ability to work from home, according to a survey of 4,000 adults.

One in 10 respondents said they want to work from home, suggesting that home-working has proved a benefit of the pandemic for some, said the report.

The desire to work from home is strongest in London, where one in six people intends to find a role that will allow them to work remotely, and lowest in Scotland, at one in 20, the poll found.

Under 25-year-olds are most likely to want to make changes to their work plans in the next few years as a result of the pandemic and are more likely than any other age group to work from home, said Aviva.

Covid-19 crisis makes it ‘right time’ to up spending on mental health, Ross says

Tories are pledging to increase funding for mental health services by hundreds of millions if they win May’s Holyrood election.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross has revealed his party’s manifesto for that vote will include a pledge to ensure mental health care gets 10% of the NHS budget.

Currently just over 8% of health service spending goes to this area, the Tory said, adding that increasing it to 10% could increase funding levels by approximately £325 million.

The Royal College of Psychiatrists has already called for mental health care to receive a tenth of the NHS budget – with Mr Ross arguing the coronavirus pandemic meant this was the “right move at the right time”.

He said there had been a “massive impact on individuals’ mental health over the last year” with the coronavirus lockdown seeing people “shut away from our loved ones” and others staying inside for long periods as they work from home.

Mr Ross said that this was why his party “will be putting in our manifesto an increase in funding for mental health services up to 10% of the total health spend in Scotland”.

He told members of the Scottish Parliamentary Journalists’ Association that the Conservatives “believe more has to be done and more support has to be given to mental health services”.

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