Publication - Minutes

Scottish Government COVID-19 Advisory Group minutes: 9 July 2020

Published: 14 Jul 2020
Date of meeting: 9 Jul 2020

A note of the twenty-fourth meeting of the COVID-19 Advisory Group held on 9 July 2020.

14 Jul 2020
Scottish Government COVID-19 Advisory Group minutes: 9 July 2020

Items and actions

The Advisory Group discussed winter preparedness and provisions that will need to be in place when flu season begins. The group considered the groups which are currently eligible for the flu vaccine and whether there may be benefit in additional groups receiving this. Part of the discussion touched on current public perceptions around the flu vaccine and the importance of clear communication supporting uptake.  The possible impacts on testing for Covid were discussed.

Information on new and upcoming data dashboards was presented to the group. These dashboards aim to provide local health protection teams with a better understanding of the paths of the virus. The inclusion of early warning indicators at a low level of geography also supports this. There are some challenges around the integration of data from a wide variety of sources but work is ongoing to address this. 

The role of testing waste water and sewage was discussed. Currently waste water is used for monitoring of disease such as polio. Work suggests that there may be similar potential for covid-19 monitoring. 

The group noted that sequencing will continue to play an important role in providing the epidemiological links between outbreaks. 

The group noted the need for further research and clarity on the importance of different transmission routes of covid-19. 

Last week’s discussion on risk and risk communication was continued. Group members noted the launch of the #We Are Scotland campaign. As policy is developed it will be important to distinguish between relative and absolute risk for different groups. 

The group received updates from its subgroups as well as from group members attending SAGE. The group will continue to support the Education and Children’s issues subgroup as it finalises advice on schools.