Health chiefs in Fife have urged people to follow Covid-19 guidance after an alarming outbreak of the virus in Tayport.
NHS Fife has confirmed that a cluster of 21 people with links to the small Fife town have tested positive so far, and contact tracing is being carried out as a matter of urgency to limit the spread where possible.
The cluster is believed to be connected to a small number of hospitality venues in the town, and those venues have since closed voluntarily to allow deep cleaning to take place and assessments from environmental officers.
Meanwhile, Fife health and social care partnership also confirmed over the weekend that two members of staff associated with the Path Medical Practice in Kirkcaldy have also tested positive for Covid-19.
A number of close contacts have been identified and are currently self-isolating, although the partnership say there are no wider concerns around the risk to patients and the wider public and it is safe to attend the surgery.
Dona Milne, director of public health at NHS Fife, said: “We are aware that there has been a notable increase in the amount of community transmissions throughout Fife – instances where people have picked up the virus and we have been unable to establish a clear source of origin.
“Whilst the evidence suggests that the cases in Tayport are largely linked to hospitality venues in the town, we would still encourage everyone in the area – and indeed across Fife – to remain vigilant and take steps to help protect themselves and others from the virus.
“Do not visit others out with your household bubble indoors, keep a safe physical distance where possible, wear face coverings where distancing is difficult, keep hands and surfaces clean, and, if you do develop any of the key COVID-19 symptoms: a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste, isolate and arrange a test immediately.
“We know that this is a difficult time for people, but we also know that following this guidance makes a real difference.
“Please stick with it Fife and do your bit to protect yourself and others around you.”
News of the wider spread in Tayport comes after a number of staff at Cobbies Inn, near the marina, contracted the virus, and management took the decision to close the premises despite being given the go ahead of re-open by public health officials.
Rumours circulating locally suggested that at least one staff member was seriously ill, but a spokesperson for the pub declined to comment further.