Health experts ‘concerned’ by soaring Covid cases as FM to make announcement TODAY

Today marks the First Minister’s first briefing in three weeks, and comes amid soaring infections of the virus.

The country has recorded more than 3,000 cases every day for the past five.

It comes after Scotland officially moved beyond Level 0 Covid restrictions on August 9 – which allowed for the biggest relaxing of virus curbs since the start of the pandemic.

But the SNP leader said cases across the country are “on the rise again”.

National Clinical Director Jason Leitch has admitted to concerns over the spike in cases.

He told BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme: “We are concerned.

“It’s principally young people, but not only young people.

“But a big percentage are under 40, so that means the harm is not as significant, but people are still harmed by this virus, either the older people who get it or some small proportion of those younger people.

“Cabinet will meet today and we’ve given balanced advice, we’ve told the truth about the state of the pandemic.

“I don’t expect us to make dramatic changes, I think we will almost certainly keep the baseline mitigations that we’ve got in place just now.”

Confirming today’s briefing, Ms Sturgeon said: “With cases on the rise again – in Scotland and elsewhere – I will be giving a Covid update today at 12.15pm. I’ll be joined by CMO @DrGregorSmith. Please tune in if you can.”

No deaths linked to coronavirus were recorded in Scotland yesterday, but 3,189 new cases were confirmed.

It means new cases remained above 3,000 for a fifth consecutive day.

Although the number of new cases dropped by one on the previous day, the rest positivity rate has risen from 10.8% to 12.4% in the same period.

We told earlier of a warning Scottish schools could be closed AGAIN if Covid infections continue to rise.

It comes after a sharp spike in positive cases coincided with pupils returning to class.

Professor Linda Bauld, of Edinburgh University and now a government adviser, has raised concerns over a repeat of last year’s locking down of schools, which saw pupils forced to learn from home.

The Prof noted that cases being largely among younger people suggested the vaccine rollout had been effective.

Meanwhile, we exclusively revealed that more than £2million has been paid to families of some of the 52 health and social care workers who have died from Covid.

Nicola Sturgeon’s government has awarded ten sums of around £100,000 each to grieving relatives of NHS employees.

And 19 claims of around £60,000 have been settled for loved ones of virus victims from the social care sector, figures released under Freedom of Information laws have revealed.

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