Six patients have now died after being diagnosed with coronavirus in Scotland, the First Minister has confirmed.
Speaking at First Minister’s Questions, Nicola Sturgeon said the number of patient deaths had doubled overnight to six from three.
The First Minister told MSPs on Thursday: “I am… extremely sad to confirm that as of 9am this morning there have now been six reported deaths of patients in Scotland who had tested positive for Covid-19, that is an increase of three from yesterday.
“I want to put on record my thoughts to their loved ones at this incredibly painful time for them.”
She also said as of 9am there have now been 266 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Scotland, up 39 from the figure of 227 reported on Wednesday.
However, she said that this was “likely to be an underestimate of the true prevalence of the infection”.
The policy of the governments of the UK is no longer to test every suspected case of coronavirus but to carry out “surveillance testing” of potential patients through GPs and hospitals, through which they aim to gain an understanding of how Covid-19 is spreading throughout the country.
Broken down by health board, Thursday’s figures show a rise of 14 cases in Greater Glasgow and Clyde in the last 24 hours to a total of 71.
There are two new cases in the Lothian area, taking the total there to 35, and eight more each in Lanarkshire and Shetland, where total cases are now 33 and 24 respectively.
However, the rise in cases in Shetland is partly attributed to six former NHS Grampian cases being reclassified, where total cases are down from 24 to 18.
Tayside is treating three new Covid-19 patients, up to 27, and 17 are being treated in Forth Valley, a rise of two.
Patients in Ayrshire and Arran have risen from nine to 12. All other health board areas with confirmed coronavirus cases remain in the single figures for now.
There have still been no reported cases on Orkney or the Western Isles.
UK-wide, a total of 3269 coronavirus cases have been confirmed, up 643 in a day, with 144 deaths – a rise of 40.