Responding to the First Minister's covid briefing today, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said there is no room for optimism as he highlighted the urgent need for a new approach to cope with the immense pressure being put on essential services including hospitals due to staff self-isolating.
Mr Rennie said:
“I fear for the NHS and other essential services right now because huge numbers of key workers are self-isolating and there was nothing in the First Minister's statement for them. It's not covid-driven patient demand but staff shortages that are causing hospitals to trigger code black. How much more of a warning can you get.
“The Royal College of Surgeons are clear that there needs to be an urgent change of approach. They have proposed a test and release system could keep key workers and the public safe.
"I am dismayed we didn't get an announcement today about self-isolation because no change and waiting longer to take decisions could see essential services keel over, from operating theatres to GP surgeries, pharmacies and bin collections. There is a critical impact right now and they need an urgent response from the First Minister."