Humza Yousaf says there is 'absolutely a risk of Covid cases rising' due to COP26
Humza Yousaf has said there is “absolutely a risk of Covid cases rising” due to Glasgow hosting COP26.
Speaking on BBC Scotland’s Sunday Show, the Health Secretary said that “of course” there will be an increase in coronavirus cases as a result of delegates attending the climate change summit in Glasgow next month.
He said: “Of course we’d expect there to be positive cases that are linked to COP, but we are also very, very assured by the protocols we’ve got in place to isolate those cases as best we possibly can.”
When asked about the possibility of increased restrictions due to a COP-related coronavirus spike, Yousaf said: “We’ll do everything we can to make sure we keep [cases] to a minimum.
“But there’s no public health expert in the world who would say there’s no risk, in the midst of a global pandemic, to have tens of thousands of people descending onto largely one city.
“So there is absolutely a risk of Covid cases rising thereafter, but we’ll do everything we can to mitigate that.”
Scottish Labour’s health spokesperson Jackie Baillie said: “The Health Secretary simply had no answers to the potential impact of COP26 on our NHS.
“We need to see action to speed up the booster programme, ramp up testing and to secure surge capacity for our NHS.
“We are looking down the barrel at a winter of extreme pressure on our NHS and potentially surging levels of Covid.
“We need action from the Health Secretary to avoid this, not warm words.”