Coronavirus cases in Scotland remain stubbornly high, data shows, despite Nicola Sturgeon introducing a circuit-breaker weeks before England’s lockdown was announced.
The First Minister imposed a ban on household visits, among other restrictions, for Scots on September 25.
However, data reveals the number of people testing positive for the virus is still at concerning levels, nearly two months on.
On the day the circuit-breaker came into effect, Scotland had 574 new cases, and a cumulative total of 27,762.
Daily tallies have since frequently been at more than double that, including as recently as Tuesday, when 1,243 tested positive.
The seven-day rolling average has also experienced a two-fold increase from 540.3 seven weeks ago to 1,160.
As a result the cumulative total has soared and is now only just shy of 80,000.
Daily tallies have since frequently been at more than double the levels seen when restrictions were introduced on September 25, including as recently as Tuesday, when 1,243 tested positive
Deaths have also risen substantially, with just one reported on the day of the new restrictions, compared to 32 earlier this week
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon imposed a ban on household visits, among other restrictions, for Scots on September 25
Deaths have also risen substantially, with just one reported on the day of the new restrictions, compared to 32 earlier this week.
The total number of Covid deaths since the start of the pandemic is now up to more than 4,600.
Meanwhile in England, cases have generally been on the decline since the second lockdown was enforced on November 5, with fewer reported on all but two days since then, including just 951 on Thursday – less than half the number seen a week before.
In her address to the nation on September 25, Ms Sturgeon focused her message on youngsters, following concerns of large outbreaks at universities, asking students to do their bit to help control the spread of the virus.
Outlining the new measures, she said: ‘With some limited exceptions, none of us should be visiting each other’s homes at the moment.
‘Outdoors or in public indoor spaces, we must not meet in groups of any more than six people from a maximum of two households.
‘Children under 12 are not included in these limits outdoors so they can play with their friends and young people aged 12 to 17 are exempt from the two household limit they can meet outdoors in groups of up to six but all six people don’t have to be from just two households.
‘From today, all hospitality premises will close by 10 pm to try to reduce the amount of time people are spending in licensed premises.
‘Beyond that, we are asking people to limit visits to and social interactions in pubs and restaurants as far as possible.
‘These measures are tough, I know they are tough but they are necessary if we are to keep schools open, resume more non-Covid NHS services, keep care homes safe and protect jobs.
‘The danger – if we don’t act now – is that the virus will continue to spread, and even more severe or longer-lasting restrictions will be required later.’
Since then, a complex five-tier system has been introduced, with those at the top end to experience limitations almost as severe as the full lockdown imposed across the UK in March, when everyone was urged to stay at home.
Meanwhile, Wales has seen some success following the introduction of its ‘firebreak’ lockdown on October 23, with cases falling drastically since they hit a peak of 1,582 a week on from the restrictions coming into play.
Since then, the seven-day rolling average has plummeted from 1304.6 to 874.6.
In Northern Ireland, where restrictions have also been in place, the number of daily cases has dropped from a peak of 1,118 last month to just 408 on Thursday, with the rolling average at 571.3 compared to 1006.7.