Covid-19 in Scotland: Quarantine checks made on 'under 5%' of travellers

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Glasgow AirportImage source, Getty Images
Image caption,
Almost 100,000 travellers arriving in Scotland from abroad since June have been required to quarantine

Covid-19 contact tracers have contacted fewer than one in 20 Scots who were required to quarantine after travelling abroad since June, figures show.

The National Contact Tracing Centre also failed to reach 1,129 travellers it tried to contact to check they were complying with self-isolation rules.

The centre was unable to contact more than 250 travellers last week, according to Public Health Scotland.

The Scottish government said emails were sent to all requiring quarantine.

A spokesperson said the National Contact Tracing Centre made follow-up contact with about 600 returning passengers a week, and £1m was being invested to recruit 25 additional staff.

The figures show that between 22 June and 20 September, 95,564 people arrived in Scotland from countries where quarantine is required, such as France, Spain and Greece.

Since 22 June, contact tracers have successfully contacted 4,581 people to check if they are self-isolating for two weeks following their return - just under 4.8% of those required to do so.

They were unable to contact 1,129 people, the data shows.

Getty Images
Travellers arriving in Scotland

June - September

  • 95,564 travellers required to quarantine

  • 4,581successful contacts made

  • 1,129contact failed

Source: Public Health Scotland

The most recent figures, for the week ending 20 September, show 12,386 travellers arriving in Scotland that were required to quarantine, with contact tracers getting in touch with 312 of them.

There were 258 people who they tried, but failed, to contact.

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said the Scottish government urgently needed to fix "the holes in the quarantine system".

The Scottish Lib Dem leader said: "Experts have told us some people returning from abroad haven't played by the rules.

"The weak system has proven unable to identify this, let alone do anything about it, and that was when virus elimination was the goal."