Scottish First Minister raises ‘serious concern’ over ‘test results backlog’

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she has “serious concern” with the “backlog of test results” for Covid-19.

Speaking at the Scottish Government’s coronavirus briefing, she said she had raised her fears with the UK Government.

Ms Sturgeon urged UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock to share the “full scale and nature of issues they are facing” so her government could assist in alleviating them.

Announcing 70 new coronavirus cases north of the border in the past 24 hours, she warned she does not believe the figures are complete.

The First Minister said: “I have a very serious concern that the backlog of test results being faced by the UK laboratory network is starting to impact on the timeous reporting of Scottish results.”

She said the figures currently available show 22,749 people have now tested positive in Scotland, up from 22,679 the day before.

This is 2.7% of newly-tested individuals, down from 3.2% on Sunday.

No deaths of confirmed Covid-19 patients have been recorded in the past 24 hours and the number of fatalities under this measure remains at 2,499.

There are 264 people in hospital confirmed to have the virus, up by five in 24 hours.

Of these patients, seven were in intensive care, the same as the previous day.

The First Minister said more than 900,000 people have downloaded the Protect Scotland coronavirus contact tracing app since its launch last week.

She said it was believed this was enough for the technology to begin working, but urged those who have not to do so.

She particularly urged students who will be heading to university soon to download the app.

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