FM to announce whether Scotland faces more coronavirus restrictions

The First Minister will update MSPs on Tuesday amid concern over a rise in cases of the Omicron variant.

Nicola Sturgeon will give a coronavirus update on Tuesday amid concern over a rise in cases of the Omicron variant.

The First Minister is scheduled to address MSPs at the Scottish Parliament.

Ministers are to discuss options on tackling the increase in Covid cases at a cabinet meeting on Tuesday morning.

Speaking to STV News on Monday, the SNP leader warned the virus had learned to “run a lot faster”, as she indicated that decision-makers have to think about how to slow down the spread of Omicron.

She said: “The virus has just learned to run a lot faster, speeding up vaccinations, but we will also have to think about steps we need to take to slow down the spread of Omicron.

“Now, we’re going to be very careful about that, people have lived with this for two years.

“We’ve tried to minimise the additional impact on people’s lives and be very proportionate.

“But, Cabinet will consider some of these options tomorrow and I will set it out in an orderly way to Parliament in the afternoon.”

Despite fears of Christmas plans being disrupted, with companies already having been urged to defer work nights out this year, Sturgeon insisted the country is in a “very different situation” from 2020.

She said: “I think we need to try to protect people’s ability to spend Christmas with their families, but we do need to think about the advice we’re giving people to keep as safe as possible in the run-up to Christmas, to keep as safe as possible as we go through Christmas.

“We’re in a very different situation from last Christmas. On the upside, because we’ve got vaccines. We had only barely started the vaccination programme last Christmas.

“But we’re also in a different situation because frankly people’s mental health, their wellbeing, their ability to cope with this, is reduced because of the longevity of the crisis we’ve been dealing with.

“As First Minister, as the Government, we’ve got to take all of that into account.

“We can’t magic away this virus unfortunately, but in how we deal with it, we’ve got to understand the realities of people’s lives and try to strike the right balance and that’s what we’re working really hard to do.”

Scotland recorded 26 new cases of the Omicron variant on Monday, taking the overall number to 186, while a further 3756 Covid-19 cases were confirmed.

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