Coronavirus: Borders schools see positive cases recorded

PUPILS at a number of Borders schools are self-isolating following cases of coronavirus, it has been announced.

A joint release from NHS Borders and Scottish Borders Council (SBC) was issued today (June 17).

The confirmed schools with pupils self-isolating are St Peter’s Primary and Burgh Primary in Galashiels, along with Jedburgh Grammar Campus, Berwickshire High and West Linton Primary.

Some pupils in schools in Hawick and Selkirk are also self-isolating, according to the release, after being “deemed ‘close contacts’ of positive cases”.

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On the Hawick and Selkirk cases, a spokesperson for NHS Borders and SBC added: “It is important to emphasise, however, that these contacts happened in the community rather than in school.”

Tweeddale East councillor Shona Haslam, leader of SBC, said: “We are working closely with NHS Borders to manage any COVID-19 incidents in our schools and continue to ensure the most appropriate advice and updates are provided as required for parents and staff.

“When action is required this is being taken quickly and in partnership with schools and parents.”

The Conservative representative added: “We have all necessary risk assessments and safety measures in place in our schools but these new cases are a timely reminder that COVID-19 isn’t going away just yet. Please be extra vigilant and continue to follow all the guidance in place.”

According to the latest figures from Public Health Scotland, the rate of positive tests in the area has nearly doubled in a week to 66.7 cases per 100,000 people.

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On Monday (June 14), there were 46 positive cases linked to an outbreak at St Peter’s Primary. 

NHS Borders chief executive, Ralph Roberts, said: “Cases of COVID-19 are rising not only across Scotland but also here in the Borders. It is vital that we do not become complacent to the threat of this highly transmissible virus. When you mix with others there is a potential opportunity to catch or pass on COVID-19 – be this at school, work or in social settings. This is even more likely with the new Delta variant that is in circulation.

“Please consider how many people you are mixing with and the circumstances around these occasions – for example meet outdoors and in smaller groups whenever possible. It is crucial that we all continue to stick to the rules and follow the FACTS.

“We know that the vaccine is safe and has an impact on hospital admissions as well as the severity of cases. Please protect yourself and your loved ones by coming forward to get vaccinated when it is your turn, including when it is time for your second dose to ensure that you have greater protection against COVID-19.

“Over 80,000 people have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in the Borders so far, that is around 85 per cent of our total eligible population. In addition, over 59,000 people have received their second dose.

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“We are running a drop-in AstraZeneca vaccination clinic this Saturday (June 19) at the Borders Events Centre at Springwood Park in Kelso from 9.30am until 4.30pm for Borders residents in certain groups. People aged 40 and over who have not had their first vaccination can turn up without an appointment to get vaccinated. Those who had their first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine before April 25 can also turn up, even if they already have an appointment scheduled for their second dose.

“People will be seen on a first come first served basis so please be patient if you have to wait.”

Border Telegraph | News