Omicron cases in Scotland more than double after results backlog, figures show

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The number of cases in Scotland of the new Omicron variant of Covid-19 have more than doubled, Scottish Government figures show.

As of 5pm on Thursday, 3,832 confirmed cases were reported, taking the total number of cases of the new variant to 6,154.

According to the figures, the increase was caused by a backlog of genotyping results being received by Public Health Scotland that were undertaken in mid-December.

The number of people in hospital confirmed to have the new strain has also almost doubled, from 24 on Thursday to 42 on Friday.

In total, the number of cases of coronavirus increased by 7,076 since Thursday, with 10 more deaths recorded.

It means the Covid-19 death toll in Scotland under the daily measure, of people who first tested positive for the virus within the previous 28 days, is 9,822.

The latest Scottish Government figures show the daily positivity rate stood at 14.6%, up from 12.7% on Thursday.

There were 536 people in hospital with recently confirmed Covid-19 on Wednesday, down four on the day before, and 34 people were in intensive care, down four.

So far 4,378,172 people have received their first dose of a Covid-19 vaccination, 4,006,076 have received their second dose, and 2,841,703 have received a third dose or booster.

The news comes just 24 hours before many Scots are expected to meet loved ones for Christmas, with one of the country’s top clinicians stressing the need to stay safe.

On Friday, national clinical director Jason Leitch said: “The Omicron variant is coming, but behaviour and vaccines are keeping it at bay a little.

“But tomorrow is crucial for that, because if we suddenly throw caution to the wind, then it will find a way to infect individuals who gather.

“Try and (meet) carefully, test before you meet other people and get yourself vaccinated.”

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