Local MSP plea to constituents

Monday September 21st 2020

Colin Beattie MSP
Colin Beattie MSP, Midlothian North & Musselburgh, writes his monthly column for Midlothian View

NHS Lothian have issued a plea to all Lothian residents to follow the latest COVID-19 guidance and in doing so, help to keep Lothian out of lockdown. In Midlothian there have been recent events which have led to infection clusters, which shows the impact that can be had when rules are not properly followed. I ask my constituents to be sensible in order to protect others and to prevent a local lockdown.

I would like to reiterate the most up to date guidance.

Whether indoors or outside, no more than six people in total, from a maximum of two households, can meet at any time. You must still keep 2 metres away from others when meeting friends and family from different households, but this does not include children under 12.

Remember hand washing is still vital and you should wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitiser. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

Face coverings should be worn in shops, on public transport and public transport premises such as railway stations, bus stations and airports, and in other indoor public places such restaurants (when not seated), libraries and places of worship.

Activities like pub crawls, house parties, and big meet ups at the park or the beach should not be happening at this time.

If you experience a high fever, persistent cough or loss of taste or smell, you must self-isolate and order a COVID test through the NHS inform website.

If you are not sure of the most up to date guidance, then the best place to look is the Scottish Government website.

The Scottish Government have now launched a contact tracing app – ‘Protect Scotland’ – which is a private and anonymous app that alerts you if you have been in close contact with another app user who tests positive for coronavirus. The app is free and available to download now.

As we see the rates of infection beginning to rise, it will stop the spread of Coronavirus by using effective tracing methods. This will help us to avoid a lockdown, by containing the virus and keeping track of its spread. We can then encourage targeted testing for those who have been in close contact with someone who has Covid-19. I am pleased to see such an innovative app that is undoubtedly a significant step forward in getting our society back on track to something closer to normal. I would encourage all my constituents to download this app, and to work together to protect Scotland from the spread of Coronavirus.

I hope that we can all work together to follow the Scottish Government advice, protect Scotland and our NHS, and keep Coronavirus rates low.

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