Joint statement from NHS Borders and Scottish Borders Council

Statement Issued Thursday 29 October 2020

"The Scottish Government's introduction of a new multi-level system to address the COVID-19 pandemic is a significant development.

"It is clearly helpful to have appropriate local measures in place to address the threat that COVID-19 presents in our communities.

"Here in the Scottish Borders, NHS Borders and Scottish Borders Council continue to work closely to ensure that every appropriate measure is taken to support individuals, their families and wider communities at this difficult time.

"It is essential that everyone follows the current guidance and adheres to the restrictions in place. Through that compliance we can be most confident of low rates of infection and, in time, reduced restrictions by being placed into Level 1."

Council Leader, Shona Haslam, said: "Like the Scottish Government, I am disappointed that the Scottish Borders is not in Level 1, as the indicators would suggest it should be.

"However, I understand that there are still concerns about rising infection rates and the outbreak in Jedburgh. I have asked the Deputy First Minister for a further meeting next week to set out a timetable for the Scottish Borders to move into Level 1 as soon as possible.

"Our businesses and hospitality industry will not survive unless they can either trade, or receive additional financial support. I am hopeful that so long as our current trend continues that we can quickly move to Level 1 and allow businesses to trade more normally and for people to meet and socialise more normally too."

NHS Borders Chair, Karen Hamilton commented: "We welcome the introduction of the new system and are committed to working alongside Scottish Borders Council to inform decisions about any future change to the level for the Scottish Borders.

"In the meantime we would encourage everyone to fully comply with the guidance so that we continue to protect each other and our services."

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