No new covid-19 deaths recorded in Scotland or Northern Ireland

7 June 2020, 14:23

There have been no new Covid-19 deaths in Scotland and Northern Ireland
There have been no new Covid-19 deaths in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Picture: PA

By Asher McShane

No new coronavirus deaths have been recorded in Scotland or Northern Ireland today.

It is the first day since lockdown began that there have been no new deaths in Scotland.

The death toll for Northern Ireland stands at 537, and Scotland 2,415, including deaths in the community and care homes.

The Scotland figures show no change on Saturday's figure - the first time the death total has remained the same since March 20.

The Scottish Government figures also show that 15,621 people have tested positive for Covid-19, an increase of 18.

Scottish health secretary Jeane Freeman said there were still 25 people in intensive care with the disease.

“In the last 24 hours, no deaths have been registered of patients who have confirmed through a test as having covid-19,” she said.

She urged caution about the figures however, saying “it is still very likely that further covid deaths will be reported in the days ahead.”

Yesterday Downing Street announced that 40,465 people had died with confirmed cases of covid-19 in the UK.

Earlier today, Matt Hancock insisted the Government made the "right decisions at the right time" with England's coronavirus lockdown, despite a leading scientist saying lives would have been saved had ministers acted sooner.

The Health Secretary disagreed with the comments by infectious diseases expert Professor John Edmunds, who suggested the UK should have imposed restrictions in early March - although he admitted it would have been "very hard to pull the trigger at that point".

Prof Edmunds, who attends meetings of the Government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), told the BBC: "We should have gone into lockdown earlier.

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"I think it would have been hard to do it, I think the data that we were dealing with in the early part of March and our kind of situational awareness was really quite poor.

"And so I think it would have been very hard to pull the trigger at that point but I wish we had - I wish we had gone into lockdown earlier. I think that has cost a lot of lives unfortunately."

Asked if he agreed with the professor's comments, Mr Hancock later replied: "No. I think we took the right decisions at the right time.

"And there's a broad range on Sage of scientific opinion, and we were guided by the science - which means guided by the balance of that opinion - as expressed to ministers through the chief medical officer and the chief scientific adviser.

"That's the right way for it to have been done."