Angus MacNeil MP has expressed delight that Professor Devi Sridhar, Chair of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh, is backing the idea for an Isles test plan pilot.

Mr MacNeil who has been pushing the case for greater testing in the islands for over a month, to give a better picture of the spread of Covid-19 in the islands, has welcomed the comments by Prof Devi Sridhar.

Backing the idea of a Hebridean test and trace pilot the well respected expert during this pandemic, Professor Devi Sridhar, said:

“It’s clearly incredibly important to increase testing as we need to move from a situation of quarantining everyone, to quarantining just those who are carrying, or who have been exposed to the virus.

“Testing is essential as well to identifying carriers of the virus- and we should be testing everyone who is symptomatic, and even going further to testing large numbers of health workers and front-line essential workers to identify asymptomatic carriers of the virus.”

Commenting Angus MacNeil MP said:

“Clearly the policy has to change when experts are telling us what they are telling us. We know full well if we leave lockdown and don’t know where the virus is that the virus will get the chance to escape and spread around, causing a further lockdown.

“Testing helps us leave lockdown in an informed way. In a way which minimises economic damage. Our first responsibility is to health but we can’t be ignoring the economy while safeguarding health when it is possible to do both at the same time.

“As Prof Sridhar is advocating, the testing to identify the carriers is a vital thing that must happen.”