Sandesh Gulhane, the health spokesman for the Scottish Tories, called on Ms Sturgeon to urgently bring Scotland’s self-isolation rules into line with the rest of the UK.
“This new data shows that despite rising case numbers, very severe illness does not seem to have increased at the same rate – with only one person requiring intensive care as a result of the omicron variant,” Dr Gulhane said.
“This is yet more evidence that while omicron is more transmissible, it’s also much less severe.
“However, we are still facing the possibility of essential public services grinding to a halt, as a result of staff absences due to self-isolation rules.”
He added: “The First Minister must now finally take the step on self-isolation that we’ve been calling for for weeks, and reduce the period to seven days, in line with the rest of the UK.”
Restrictions on large events could remain until spring
Jason Leitch, the Scottish Government’s national clinical director, this week suggested that restrictions on large events could remain in force until the spring.
He responded to a call to rearrange Edinburgh’s Hogmanay celebration for April by claiming it may be “might be slightly too early” to do so that month. He later backtracked, claiming he had been specifically responding to a question about rescheduling Hogmanay celebrations rather than all large events.
Monday’s total of 20,217 cases followed 17,065 cases being reported on January 1 and 14,080 on January 2. The Government warned that there had been delays in results being reported due to the high numbers of tests being administered.
On Monday, there were no tests available for the general public in Glasgow while Edinburgh residents were told to drive 30 miles to Glenrothes in Fife for a PCR.