First cases of Coronavirus in the Western Isles - steps being taken to identify possible routes of infection

The first two cases of Covid-19 (Coronavirus) have been confirmed in the Western Isles this afternoon (Tuesday).

Tuesday, 31st March 2020, 3:52 pm

In a statement, NHS Western Isles said that the cases were both on the Isle of Lewis, and moved to reassure communities in the islands that it was prepared for Coronavirus reaching the Western Isles, and urged people to follow government guidelines to restrict the spread of the virus.

NHS Western Isles is now taking steps to identify possible routes of infection.

NHS Western Isles Chief Executive, Gordon Jamieson, and Chair, Ian Burgess, released a statement follwoing the confirmation of the cases.

They said: “Whilst we are clearly disappointed that we now have confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Western Isles, we would reassure members of the public that we have been preparing for this situation over a number of weeks and we are heartened by the fact that so many people across our islands have been following the government guidelines to stay at home, to help us prevent any further spread of cases.

“We cannot emphasise enough the importance of staying at home and social distancing at this time.”

A spokesperson for Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, said: “Whilst disappointing this is not unexpected and for several weeks now the Comhairle has been preparing, along with Public Health and other partner agencies, for such an eventuality.

“It is now more important than ever before that everyone follows the Scottish Government advice – particularly to stay at home unless absolutely essential – and to observe physical distancing.”

Western Isles MSP Alasdair Allan, commented: “The news that two people on the Isle of Lewis have tested positive for coronavirus is concerning.

“My thoughts are with the individuals involved and their families, and I hope they make a full and speedy recovery.

“This news shows that no corner of Scotland is safe from the virus.

“I know that health and other essential services in the islands are doing an exceptional job.

“We now need to help them by trying to contain the spread of the virus within the islands and across Scotland.

“I would urge all islanders to help save lives and please stay at home.”