There have been 125 hospital patients infected with Covid-19 while receiving treatment in a non-coronavirus ward, the health Secretary has revealed.
Jeane Freeman confirmed the number of cases outside of wards designated specifically for treatment of the disease in response to a question from Monica Lennon.
The Scottish Labour health spokeswoman described the number of these cases as “worrying”.
In a written response, Freeman said 120 of the cases – reported between March 18 and June 3 – have been “closed”, meaning there is no further evidence of transmission within the hospital.
Lennon said: “Protecting the NHS and saving lives has been a national priority, therefore it’s worrying that so many outbreaks of Covid-19 have been taking place in our hospitals.
“More information on the 125 incidents that are known about must be published.
“The first known incident happened in the middle of March when we know hundreds of older patients were discharged into are homes without being tested.
“This revelation raises serious concerns around PPE, the testing of hospital staff and the ability of the virus to spread in institutions such as hospitals and care homes.
“It is clear that the concerns of patients, families and care home residents have not been listened to and as a result lives have been put in danger.”
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said: “Healthcare staff have worked hard to keep Covid-19 from spreading through hospitals.
“I have been speaking up for the many people who are suffering from delays to operations and treatment for non-virus health issues.
“From people requiring gallbladders removed to hip replacements done to GP care provided there is a lot of pain and anxiety.
“I want non-urgent operations to restart as soon as possible when it is safe to do so.
“With the number of new cases decreasing, I want ministers to reconsider the speed of the return of non-urgent procedures so that people waiting can get the care they need.”