Mon 4 Jan 21
The First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced from midnight tonight (4 January) for the duration of January, a legal requirement to stay at home except for essential purposes. This is similar to the lockdown of March last year.
Read the stay at home guidance for regulations coming into effect on 5 January 2021.
Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed the new COVID variant now accounts for almost half of all new cases in Scotland with concern at rising case numbers and hospital capacity. During her statement she said:
In short, NHS services are coping at present – although the pressure on frontline staff is considerable - but already in some areas the position is fragile, and getting more challenging.
And if the rate of increase in case numbers that we have seen in past two weeks was to continue unchecked, there would be a real risk of our NHS being overwhelmed - even with contingency plans in place.
In fact, our modelling suggests that without further intervention, we could breach inpatient Covid capacity within 3 or 4 weeks.
And, of course, a sharply increasing number of cases, in human terms, means many more people becoming ill and dying.
All of that explains why we have to act quickly and decisively.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
New measures apply to those parts of Scotland currently at level four - all of mainland Scotland - and are effectively an enhancement to level four.
This will see mainland Scotland returning to a position similar to the lockdown of last March and will be in place for the whole of January (although, this will be monitored and may be longer).
The island areas currently in level three will remain there for now.
Tourism and hospitality busiesses remain closed under level four. Read the stay at home guidance.
Grants are available for businesses required to close as a result of restrictions. That support is in addition to support through the UK wide furlough scheme.