More coronavirus cases expected in North Mainland

More new coronavirus cases are expected in the North Mainland which could be linked to the the small outbreak last week, NHS Shetland has warned.

As of today (Boxing Day) four new cases had been confirmed, bringing the total number for Shetland to 80. That was after the total having stood at 76 since the first day of December.

The outbreak is understood to be partly linked to a birthday party in Brae, attended by someone who recently returned from the Scottish mainland, while one case was reported after a socially distanced staff event at a hotel.

A suspension to indoor visiting at the North Haven Care Centre in Brae has also been introduced.

NHS public health consultant Susan Laidlaw said they were continuing to manage a community outbreak of Covid-19 which was largely, but not entirely, focused on the North Mainland.

She said: “There has very clearly been transmission within the community, associated with a number of social activities.

As well as extensive contact tracing and isolating cases and contacts, we are actively looking for new cases by testing asymptomatic contacts.”

Dr Laidlaw said testing would continue over the Christmas weekend. Unfortunately the outbreak had resulted in a number of households and individuals who were now having to self-isolate over the holiday period, but isolation of cases and contacts was the only way to bring the outbreak under control.

She said: “It is essential that cases and contacts continue to isolate as advised by the Test and Protect Team, even if they have a negative test result.

“In liaison with Shetland Islands Council there has been a need to suspend indoor visiting at North Haven Care Centre while there is virus spread in the community.”


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