Coronavirus in Scotland: Sixty more cases detected

Another 60 confirmed cases of Covid-19 have been detected in Scotland, including 39 in the NHS Grampian area.

A cluster of linked cases was discovered in Aberdeen last week, leading to lockdown restrictions being reintroduced in the city.

Scotland's national clinical director Jason Leitch said 110 cases had been linked to the Aberdeen outbreak, with more expected to be confirmed.

Almost 650 "close contacts" from the infections are being investigated.

The positive cases include two players at Aberdeen FC.

The players were among a group of eight footballers who visited a bar in the city a week ago. The whole group are now self-isolating.

Mr Leitch told BBC Scotland that the increase of 60 cases was "not unexpected" but "still worries us".

He said it was difficult to be sure how many of the 39 new cases in NHS Grampian were linked to the Aberdeen cluster.

"We know that at 15:30 yesterday we had 110 cases connected to this outbreak," he said.

"We allow test and protect to do its work, rather than be constantly sending us hourly updates and that's the way it should be. I would expect a number of those positives to be connected."

Covid-19 in Aberdeen City

Daily increase in cases

Mr Leitch said the Scottish government was working to prevent community transmission outside the Aberdeen outbreak.

"We want to find each of these cases, break the chain, self-isolate the people so that we can get those numbers down again and Grampian can go back to normal – or semi-normal – like the rest of the country," he told the BBC.

But the clinical director added that the effects of the local lockdown in Aberdeen may not be seen for "days, even weeks".

Aberdeen has seen a total of 112 new coronavirus cases in the seven days up to 7 August – a rate of 49 infections per 100,000 people.

This compares to a rate of 80.6 in Blackburn with Darwen in Lancashire, which is currently top of Public Health England's local authority watchlist.

NHS Grampian said it was investigating 643 "close contacts" from cases in the area.

Susan Webb, director of public health for NHS Grampian, said: "There has been a substantial rise in the number of close contacts which is not entirely unexpected.

"We speak to detected cases more than once, as we know they will recall different details as they reflect on what they have been doing and where, and who they have met."

Ms Webb said people who developed any of the recognised symptoms of Covid-19 should isolate at home and arrange a test.

On Friday, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said it was "unacceptable" the Aberdeen footballers had gone to the Soul Bar last Saturday.

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