Coronavirus cases in Borders nearing 200 as number of fatalities caused here by disease rises to 23

Coronavirus has claimed another life in the Borders, taking the number of fatalities caused by the disease in the region to 23.

Sunday, 12th April 2020, 4:40 pm
Updated Monday, 13th April 2020, 2:01 pm
Scottish Government health secretary Jeane Freeman.

That rising death toll is accompanied by yet another double-figure increase in cases confirmed in the region, taking the total to just short of 200.

A daily update issued by the Scottish Government on the current coronavirus outbreak reveals an increase of 10 cases in the Borders today, April 12, up from 189 to 199.

The first five fatalities claimed in the Borders by Covid-19, as the virus is also known, were announced on Monday, March 30, and that figure rose to seven the day after, eight the next day, 11 last Thursday, 14 last Friday, 16 last Sunday, 17 on Monday, 19 on Tuesday, 20 on Friday, 22 yesterday and 23 today.

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They are among a death toll of 566 nationwide, up from 542 yesterday, and 10,621 across the UK, up 737 from 9,875 the day before.

More than 5,900 cases of the illness have been confirmed nationwide, up from 5,590 yesterday.

Across the UK, 84,279 people, including British prime minister Boris Johnson, have tested positive for the illness, up 5,288 from 78,991 on the day before.

Some 31,114 tests for coronavirus have been carried out in Scotland to date, with 25,202 returning negative results.

It’s over four weeks now since the first two cases of the illness were confirmed in the Borders on Wednesday, March 11, and almost a month and a half since Scotland’s first case, in Tayside, was announced on Sunday, March 1, after spreading across the world from Wuhan in China.

That figure went up to three on Friday, March 13; five on Saturday, March 14; seven on Sunday, March 15; eight the following Thursday, March 19; nine on Friday, March 20; 10 on Saturday, March 21; 11 on Sunday, March 22; 12 on Monday, March 23; 15 on Wednesday, March 25; 23 on Thursday, March 26; 28 on Friday, March 27; 35 on Saturday, March 28; 50 on Sunday, March 29; 63 on Monday, March 30; 77 on Tuesday, March 31; 87 on Wednesday, April 1; 93 on Thursday, April 2; 100 on Friday, April 3; 110 on Saturday, April 4; 130 on Sunday, April 5; 139 last Monday April 6; 149 on Tuesday; 160 on Wednesday; 167 on Thursday; 177 on Friday; 189 yesterday; and 199 today.

The number of cases of Covid-19 in the Borders is higher than one of its neighbouring health board areas, Dumfries and Galloway’s total being 186, but remains well below the two others, Lanarkshire and Lothian being up to 758 and 915 respectively.

The 5,912 Scots confirmed to have coronavirus are likely to be only a small fraction of the actual number infected, though, according to former Scottish chief medical officer Catherine Calderwood.

Dr Calderwood, replaced on an interim basis by Gregor Smith following her resignation last Sunday after being caught flouting lockdown rules, estimates that only around one in 64 cases of Covid-19 has been detected this side of the border.

That guess, if correct, would put the likely figure for the region at more than 12,700, not far off a tenth of the Borders’ population of about 115,000.

Altogether, 221 Scots, eight of them in the Borders, are in intensive care receiving treatment for coronavirus, as of last night, with 208 having tested positive and the others awaiting results.

Today’s Scottish Government update on the spread of coronavirus was given by Holyrood health secretary Jeane Freeman, and she also revealed that more than 60,000 Scots have signed up to volunteer to help tackle the Covid-19 crisis.

Scotland Cares was launched by the Scottish Government on March 29 to encourage volunteers to help the country’s medics cope with the spread of coronavirus.

Ms Freeman, MSP for Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley, said: “It is now almost two weeks since Scotland Cares campaign was launched. By lunchtime on Friday, more than 60,000 people across Scotland had registered to help.

“Not all volunteers will be used immediately, but your offer of help is very welcome and I’m very grateful to you.

“At a time when all of us have anxieties and concerns of our own, it lifts our heart to see so many people stepping forward to help others.

“If you want to help out, there is still time to register.

“You can get information on how to do that by signing up at Ready Scotland’s website.”

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