News

£1 million to support quarantine efforts

Published: 01 Sep 2020 09:15

More contact tracers to contact passengers arriving in Scotland.

More contact tracers will be recruited by the National Contact Tracing Centre to contact people travelling to Scotland from countries where a 14 day quarantine is required.

An additional £1 million of Scottish Government funding has been confirmed to recruit and train up to 25 new contact tracers, specifically to support quarantine efforts.

The National Centre contacts all passengers returning from a country that is not exempt from quarantine via email and has been contacting around 600 passengers each week.

Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said:

“As levels of COVID-19 remains low in Scotland, we need to manage the risk of cases coming into the country, particularly from countries where infections are more prevalent than here. Contacting people is vital to ensure those who are required to quarantine for 14 days are doing so.

“We originally committed to Public Health Scotland making contact with around 20% of travellers, up to a maximum of 450 per week. At the time this was considered to be a robust sample size given the number of flights and passengers affected. As the number of flights into Scotland has increased, the National Contact Tracing Centre has been exceeding our target and contacting around 600 returning passengers per week.”

Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said:

“People should be aware that there is a risk when they travel overseas right now and that they should think carefully about making non-essential trips abroad. Travellers arriving from a non-exempt country will be expected to quarantine for 14 days on arrival in Scotland unless they come under one of the limited number of exempted categories.

“This additional funding will help the National Contact Tracing Centre reach more passengers who arrive in Scotland and who are required to quarantine.

“The Scottish Government will continue to work closely with Public Health Scotland and the National Contact Tracing Centre to increase resources and ensure performance can be maintained as demands increase in line with the lifting of lockdown.”