The death toll from Coronavirus in Scotland is higher than has been previously reported, the First Minister has revealed.

Nicola Sturgeon gave the daily coronavirus update yesterday and issued new figures that showed that the actual figure is almost 50% higher than previously thought.

Ms Sturgeon said the latest daily death figures were up by 10 to taking the total to 86 dead.

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However, she revealed there has been another 40 deaths attributed to coronavirus due to a delay in reporting of some deaths.

It takes the total, as of Thursday morning, to 126 deaths where people had been tested positive for coronavirus.

Across Scotland the number of positive cases increased to 2602.

In Greater Glasgow the number of confirmed positive cases increased to 682, Lothian was next highest at 356. In Lanarkshire there were 320 positive cases the third highest in Scotland.

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Ms Sturgeon said of the extra 40 deaths they “should be distributed over a number of days”.

She said they had not been notified due to delays in informing the families.

A new reporting system will be put in place from next week, meaning the daily figure of confirmed deaths will not rely solely on health boards but will also include data from the National Records of Scotland (NRS) death registration process.

It will also report on deaths when Covid-19 is mentioned on death certificates.

The daily updated figures from next week will also include all deaths where the virus is officially suspected to have been a factor, even if it has not been confirmed by testing.

Catherine Calderwood, the chief medical officer said that numbers were still rising and only be people sticking to the rules on staying indoors could the effectiveness of the measures on slowing the spread of the virus be evaluated.

She said: “The more we comply, the better that those measures are going to reduce the transmission of the virus and that length of time, at least 13 weeks, we would be able to lift some of those measures potentially after that three month period.”

She said it is likely that more than 100,000 people in Scotland have the virus.

Ms Calderwood added: “Each death represents 1000 people who have the virus.

“Most don’t know they have it. We expect more people to become unwell.”

The First Minister also updated on plans to increase testing of NHS staff and their families in a bid to get more people back to work in the health service.

There have been, she said, 3500 workers or family members tested.

The First Minister outlined the planned increase in testing capacity.

She said the government initially had capacity to test around 390 samples a day.

That has now increased to 1,900 tests a day and the plan being put in place is to be able to do 3,500 a day by the end of this month.

However she was clear on the limitations of the tests just now.

She said: “It tells us right now whether someone with symptoms has the virus or not. It doesn’t tell us if they’re going to get symptoms, or whether, once they’ve recovered, they had the virus.”

She added that measures would not be lifted in a few weeks.

She added: I know how tough this is, but please stick with it. You are helping us save lives.”


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