Scotland experiencing new wave of Covid infections, expert says
Scotland is experiencing another wave of Covid-19 infections as cases of two Omicron variants increase, according to a leading public health expert.
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Prof Linda Bauld said the Omicron sub-lineages BA.4 and BA.5. were part of the reason for the increase in cases.
She told the BBC there had also been a “small but not significant” rise in the number of people in hospital.
Latest data estimates that around one in 30 people in Scotland had Covid-19 in the week ending 10 June.
According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this was up from one in 40 the previous week.
Prof Bauld, of the University of Edinburgh, told BBC Radio’s Good Morning Scotland programme: “I think it’s pretty clear to me from some of the data we’ve seen that we are certainly in another wave of infection, if not already it will be soon and that certainly seems to be the case in a number of countries.
“That is not a big surprise because we did anticipate we would have a rising level of infections every three or four months potentially, that’s what international colleagues have said.
“It might be surprising to people though because it’s the summer, and they’re used to hearing from us (that) the weather is better so people are more outside and therefore we reduce the risks through our behaviour.”
The weekly ONS report estimates that 176,900 people in Scotland had the virus – about 3.36% of the population.
The estimated Covid rate in Scotland is higher than in England, where it is believed one in 50 people had coronavirus in the week ending 11 June
In both Wales and Northern Ireland the estimated rate was one in 45 people.