Covid-19: Eight more deaths as cases rise above 1000

Total patient deaths from coronavirus have risen to 33, and confirmed cases are up by 165 to 1059.

Eight more people have died in Scotland after being diagnosed with coronavirus, while total confirmed cases have risen above 1000.

The First Minister said the eight new patient deaths took the country’s total to 33, while confirmed cases increased by 165 in the last 24 hours to 1059.

There are 71 Covid-19 patients currently being treated in intensive care units, Nicola Sturgeon added.

Speaking at the Scottish Government’s daily press briefing, chief medical officer Dr Catherine Calderwood said that given the official figures are an underestimate, she estimates the true number of infections in Scotland is currently around 65,000.

The press call in Edinburgh comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed he has tested positive for coronavirus.

The First Minister confirmed she has not been tested for Covid-19 and sent her best wishes to Johnson and his family.

She added: “I don’t underestimate for anybody how difficult it is to be positive for this virus.

“So I’m certainly sending my best wishes to him for a very speedy recovery.

“Should I as First Minister experience symptoms, if I need clinical advice, obviously I will take that from my own GP.

“I would follow all of the advice I am asking others to follow.”

Across the UK, there has now been a total of 766 patient deaths related to coronavirus – a rise of 182 in a day.

Source: Scottish Government

By health board area in Scotland, the most Covid-19 cases are in Greater Glasgow and Clyde, with 299 cases as of Friday – a rise of 37 in the last 24 hours.

There are 140 confirmed cases in Lanarkshire, an increase of 26, 139 in the Lothian area, up 28, and 31 new cases in Tayside, taking the health board’s total to 107.

Six more cases are reported in Forth Valley, with a total of 81, and one new case in Ayrshire and Arran where there are now 75 patients.

Fife has 41 cases, up one, Dumfries and Galloway has 47, up eight, and the Grampian region has 45 after a steep rise of 14.

NHS Highland now has 33 confirmed Covid-19 patients and NHS Border has 28, a rise of four each.

NHS Shetland cases remain unchanged on 24, while NHS Orkney and NHS Western Isles have not yet reported any cases.

Speaking in Edinburgh on Friday, the First Minister also said finance secretary Kate Forbes is due to speak to the chief secretary to the Treasury later about the support package announced for the self-employed by the Chancellor.

The government will pay self-employed people 80% of their monthly profits up to £2500 a month – based on average earnings over the last three years – after similar support was announced for PAYE workers.

However, the Chancellor warned on Thursday of a potential wait until early June for the self-employed scheme to open.

“We do still have concerns for some groups who have to wait until June,” Sturgeon said.

“The Scottish Government is going to look at what more we can do.”

She declined to comment on operational questions of Police Scotland after the force used a helicopter image to fine four people for gathering publicly in a Glasgow park.

The FM stressed checks and balances are in place with regards to the new police powers and said she is satisfied with them.

She said: “These are extraordinary times, extraordinary challenges – we need extraordinary measures.”

The Scottish Government is also in talks with supermarkets to ensure the elderly and vulnerable can continue to get supermarket deliveries amid high demand, she said.

Sturgeon further said the government is hoping to set up a national portal so that people can register to volunteer to help vulnerable people, such as by driving them to the hospital or delivering supplies.

From Monday, the Scottish Government’s daily press briefing on the virus will be done digitally.

STV News is now on WhatsApp

Get all the latest news from around the country

Follow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp

Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country

WhatsApp channel QR Code