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25/03/20 13:31

New expert group to study spread of COVID-19

Scottish panel of scientists established to provide extra analysis.

A new expert group providing additional scientific analysis of the impact of COVID-19 in Scotland has been announced by the First Minister.

As the number of cases increases, it is important that we have the fullest possible understanding of exactly how COVID-19 is spreading in Scotland.

Professor Andrew Morris, Professor of Medicine at the University of Edinburgh and Director of Health Data Research UK, will chair the Scottish Government COVID-19 Advisory Group.

He will be supported by vice chair, Professor David Crossman, Dean of Medicine at the University of St Andrews and Chief Scientific Advisor for Health at the Scottish Government.

The group will supplement the advice coming to the four nations from the Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies (SAGE) to further strengthen Scottish Government modelling work informing national and local decisions in Scotland during the pandemic.

Chief Medical Officer Dr Catherine Calderwood said:

“We are facing an unprecedented situation and it’s crucial we not only follow the latest scientific advice coming from SAGE, but establish what that means here in Scotland on a local level.

“It’s vital that we are well equipped to deal with all possibilities as this outbreak grows globally and this advisory group will play a key role in developing our understanding of the virus and its impact on Scotland.

“We will continue to work closely with the UK Government, Welsh Government and the Northern Ireland Executive as part of a coordinated response to this virus.”

Background

Read the COVID-19 Guidance for Non-Healthcare Settings.

The latest numbers of test results are published at 2pm each day on the Scottish Government website.

Updates on public health advice for coronavirus can be found on the NHS Inform website, and a free helpline has been set up for those who do not have symptoms but are looking for general health advice: 0800 028 2816.

Common symptoms of coronavirus include:
• fever or a temperature of above 37.8°C
• persistent cough