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Rennie calls for testing, care home visits and lockdown route map

February 19, 2021 5:00 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Responding to comments from John Swinney that further guidance on vaccine priority groups is expected within the next week, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said:

"Scots are waiting with bated breath to find out who will be next in line for the vaccine. Whatever the scientific experts advise, we also need to see a major ramping up of asymptomatic testing to allow more groups to be given the reassurance they need to safely return to work. While the vaccine rollout is a tribute to the hard work of our NHS staff, it is important to remember that it is only one tool in our arsenal to defeat the virus.

On deaths in care homes declining, Mr Rennie said:

"Now that we are seeing the vaccine begin to have an impact on deaths in care homes, it is time for ministers to deliver on their promise of safe visiting for families. People have been separated from their loved ones for months and some will only have a short time left. We owe it to these people to make safe visiting a reality.

On the route out of lockdown, he added:

"While everyone understands that it is too early to give hard and fast dates for relaxing the lockdown, people are desperate to know what comes next. Ministers need to let the public know whether they expect the whole country to relax restrictions together, whether we will return to the tier system of last year and which areas will be prioritised if only some restrictions can be loosened."