Covid, Covid, Covid

Monday September 28th 2020

Christine Grahame

Christine Grahame MSP writes her monthly column for Midlothian View

I so wish I could write about something other than covid but it so dominates every aspect of our lives that it is almost impossible.

I admit I did question a group of girls in the supermarket recently, wandering round just after school came out. The three (all in their early teens) were giggling and not observing any distancing (not needed outside but definitely inside) two with no face coverings and one with it round her neck. I asked one why she wasn’t wearing one. She told me she had asthma. I told her that was fine and that my wearing a face covering was offering her some extra protection if I unknowingly carried the virus.

When her pal (she with it round he neck) was asked she too said she had asthma-after a pause. I told her simply that was unlikely and that face coverings are worn to protect other people.

Yes I know it is difficult but when you see a group and none of them are wearing coverings, the chances are they are chancing it, and your health.

I like the fact that ASDA are now posting covid “marshalls” to offer face coverings if you have forgotten yours. Not confrontational but certainly a sound reminder.

The Contact Tracing App is also a good idea if you can manage to download on your phone (It depends on its age). I have written to supermarket chiefs asking if their staff can have them on their person when out and about on the shop floor given their contact with the public, to add to their protection and that of the public.

By the way if you can’t use the App you can still be contacted by Track & Trace if you have been near someone who has tested positive.

If you are in doubt about the source of the call simply call back. You will never be asked for bank details and so on.

Supermarkets I see are also now reverting to tighter covid security measures given this dreadful increase. An increase was to be expected in that tricky balance of having schools and universities return and allowing businesses and shops to reopen. The virus was bound to be suppressed if we were not out and about and now that we are, it’s up to us to keep to the FACTS: Face coverings, Avoid crowded spaces, Clean hands and surfaces, Two metres, Self-isolate and take a test if you have symptoms. With winter well on its way, with colds and flu to boot, it’s even more important to be careful for ourselves and others.

Speaking of flu, some of you will have had letters to book for a vaccine. Demand is high and you may find phone lines jammed. Best to try later than keep phoning back. The vaccines are beginning in October through to December and I understand why in this covid crisis demand is higher and more urgent but you will get yours.

Now, let’s hope we can all pull together and get through this. Take care and stay safe

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