Speaking ahead of the publication of data from trials of asymptomatic community testing, preliminary results of which revealed that 3% of those tested (426 people) returned a positive test, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said:
"These preliminary results from across the central belt suggest that there may be tens of thousands of unsuspecting people currently with the virus.
"I have been encouraging the Scottish Government to introduce a program of mass community testing for months now. While these tests are not perfect, mass testing would allow us to catch many more infections and help to prevent the virus from spreading further.
"We are months behind nations like Slovakia who have been able to test their entire population in a matter of days. Ministers must explain how they will scale up these trials and enable all of those in areas where the virus is prevalent to access them.
"This is especially important when we are just a fortnight away from Christmas, when rules are relaxed and the virus is more likely to spread.
"Downing tools on this testing program until the new year would be an astonishingly rash and reckless thing to do."