Nicola Sturgeon is to hold a briefing on Friday amid a surge in Omicron coronavirus variant numbers.
It follows Public Health Scotland issuing a plea urging people to cancel Christmas parties due to the number of Covid-19 outbreaks linked to such events.
On Thursday evening, NHS Lanarkshire announced it had suspended all but “essential” visiting across its hospitals amid the rise in Omicron cases and pressure on the health service.
The First Minister previously said she wanted to wait three weeks to see the impact of the new strain but on Friday afternoon she is expected to set out the latest ahead of her statement to parliament on Tuesday.
Health secretary Humza Yousaf told STV News he had cancelled Christmas lunch with his constituency office next week because of the serious nature of the Omicron variant.
““In fact, it’s being done all across the country,” he said.
“I’ve heard of plans by a number of people, including, in fact, actually even the presiding officer in the parliament deciding to defer Christmas drinks as well and parties.
“The First Minister is going to be giving regular updates, as you can imagine, very, very shortly. This is a fast-moving, fast-evolving picture.”
Yousaf said that if people are going to socialise then the advice remains the same: “Test, test, test.”
Scotland recorded 16 coronavirus deaths and 3196 new cases in the past 24 hours, according to Thursday’s figures.
One case of the new Omicron variant of coronavirus was also recorded, taking the total to 109.
Dr Nick Phin, director of Public Health Science and medical director at Public Health Scotland, said: “There is much that we still need to learn about Omicron, but early evidence suggests that this new Covid variant is much more transmissible.”
On December 19 last year, the First Minister announced that the majority of Scotland would enter full lockdown from Boxing Day.
Restrictions had been relaxed on Christmas Day 2020 but were then scaled back due to confirmation from scientists of a faster-spreading coronavirus strain.
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