Contact tracers will no longer call people infected with coronavirus unless they are deemed to be high risk, Scotland’s Health Secretary has announced.
Humza Yousaf confirmed that people who test positive for Covid-19 will be texted by default with public health advice and asked to provide details of close contacts online.
Only those who have been in a higher-risk setting, such as a hospital or on holiday abroad, will be called by contact tracers despite attempts to increase staff numbers to deal with growing pressure on the Test and Protect system.
Mr Yousaf said: “Our Test and Protect workforce continue to play a vital role in the battle against this pandemic and we owe them a huge debt of gratitude for all their efforts.
“Case numbers have increased recently and we have taken a number of steps to ensure the Test and Protect system continues to operate well under increasing pressure.
“We have supported recruitment processes in local health boards and bolstered the number of staff in the National Contact Centre.
“Our Test and Protect teams are also prioritising calls to cases deemed to be high risk and this is where the public can play their part.
“We are also asking anyone who has tested positive for Covid-19 to provide details of their contacts as soon as they are asked by Test and Protect, using our online tracing form, so that our teams can work quickly to offer advice to those most at risk.
“The majority of people comply when asked to self-isolate and we are thankful for the important role they continue to play in stopping transmission of Covid-19.
“While we are in the process of emerging from the pandemic, case rates at the moment underline the fact that this virus is still with us.”