Change the strategy - accept some risk.

The current approach "..focused on preventing every avoidable death.." is effectively a 'no risk' strategy which means imprisonment at home for most of us, possibly for years. That is not acceptable.

Why the contribution is important

Incarceration of any group of the of the population for an indeterminate time will lead to mental breakdown, penury, and eventually to resistance and ultimately revolution. Politicians hold the responsibility to determine both a way out of the effects of the virus and a way of returning to the population its freedoms and rights. This is not possible without taking risks, and risk brings casualties. The decisions and the balance are difficult, but it is unavoidable.

by tmper on May 05, 2020 at 04:07PM

Current Rating

Average rating: 4.1
Based on: 205 votes

Comments

  • Posted by NDM May 05, 2020 at 16:10

    Yes. Risk exists and there will be mortality. But the current approach will destroy the economy and have deeper impacts. Manage and mitigate the risk - but take some.
  • Posted by Whisk3y May 05, 2020 at 16:12

    I agree but I would say you're being overly melodramatic when you say years.
  • Posted by Lee May 05, 2020 at 16:13

    More seasonal flu deaths since this all started and no family restrictions for this. We Need to see our family and the risk to do so should be ours.
  • Posted by mklayne May 05, 2020 at 16:14

    Completely agree - if we wanted to truly avoid all avoidable deaths we could ban cigarettes, change the motorway speed limit to 30mph - it should be a balance.
  • Posted by ScottMillar May 05, 2020 at 16:17

    Cannot agree more with this post. It is exactly where my head is at and the Scot Govt should be fully transparent about the risks to each group by publishing details of who has had been unfortunate to have an underlying health issue and be more specific about ages. Every life does absolutely matter but lets not cocoon the entire population and systematically change the way that we live.
  • Posted by lindyloo May 05, 2020 at 16:19

    There are risks around us everyday of our lives. We all have to die at some point. Some of us if we are lucky will see a good innings and some of us are not so lucky. What is the point of putting us in this lockdown to prolong the life of people, when the quality of life we are having in this lockdown in non existent.
  • Posted by ryantravers May 05, 2020 at 16:20

    I completely agree. This year from 1st January to 24th April more deaths have been caused by either influenza or pneumonia than have been caused by Covid-19: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/deaths/bulletins/deathsregisteredweeklyinenglandandwalesprovisional/weekending24april2020 So why do we suddenly want to eliminate all possible deaths due to Covid-19 when this is never done with any other disease. The "No risk" strategy is ignorant of the fact that life is inherently risky and we need to grow up and accept that.
  • Posted by Euan May 05, 2020 at 16:21

    People aren't being incarcerated, they're being asked to stay at home to stop the spread of a very contagious virus. This ridiculous language and talk about revolution doesn't help anyone. You're lucky if you haven't been affected but there are thousands dead
  • Posted by jdmacd May 05, 2020 at 16:27

    Have to see family and partner! Am an isolate in isolation as is my partner - it’s seems ridiculous we cannot meet up . Seems I can mix with people and drive as a volunteer but not sit in a house or garden with family and or partner. Have to give people some more responsibility after 7 weeks .
  • Posted by Floydianslipuk May 05, 2020 at 16:28

    Agreed. We need a way out of this not a further lock down. If we don't take a risk we will end up with a country rebelling as they will have nothing to lose. Loss of economy and freedoms is a hard pill to swallow
  • Posted by elainee May 05, 2020 at 16:37

    100% agree. I think the risks of lockdown are outweighing the benefits. There is no vaccine, and could be years before one is found if ever. Very high job losses, people losing homes, millions of people being plunged into poverty, not seeing friends and family for years (the things that make life worth living). We cant stop the risk, we can reduce it and I support track and trace, more WFH, no big gatherings etc - but we need balance and need to make our own informed choices.
  • Posted by lggl May 05, 2020 at 16:37

    Agree - politicians need to take decisions which strike a balance between competing risks , not remove all risk related to just one of the many risks we face. There will be no NHS to look after us if we stay locked down and ruin the economy. The majority of people will continue to be cautious anyway - the Swedish experience shows us that.
  • Posted by deltakc May 05, 2020 at 16:38

    I’m sure that there are still plenty of people taking risks while defying the lockdown rules, hence the high number of deaths. If everyone had adhered to the rules then we wouldn’t have to stay in lockdown for so long. If you look at other European countries you’ll notice the relaxation of their rules already, mostly due to better policing and understanding from the public. Yes some risk have to be taken but the government took some before the lockdown and then realised that it was the wrong approach. I’m sure if you or your loved ones were suddenly stricken with a severe case of this horrible virus you would be much more concerned and have more empathy about the seriousness of this illness and the number of people dying
  • Posted by Davemac1960 May 05, 2020 at 16:40

    We have to balance risk not just try and avoid completely
  • Posted by JaneL May 05, 2020 at 16:51

    Not an easy decision, but I am very concerned on the impact of the economy and the future of our younger people. The financial cost is huge and you have to strike a balance somewhere. If only we could find a middle line and it was that easy!
  • Posted by davidthomaswalsh May 05, 2020 at 16:51

    We need a more balanced approach. We need to protect the most vulnerable and let the rest get back to work. We need to be clear about the risks of living with COVID vs the risks of everyday life that exist any way. This needs to be done in transparent way with facts and data and removing political considerations and vested self interests from the discussions completely.
  • Posted by Scotelka May 05, 2020 at 16:56

    I think this statement is a bit over dramatic. Realistically, if people in Scotland were adhering to the rules instead of breaking them we would be seeing a decrease of number of cases already. It's enough to look at the examples of strict lockdowns in other countries and see the benefits of it. The reason why we are all still in this situation is because of people who feel it's too much and decide to break the rules or not adhere to the social distancing guidelines. The lockdown in UK wasn't that strict to decrease the spread, it's only allowed for it to be manageable. All of us are responsible for when the lockdown will end and ending it too soon will only result in another lockdown being announced shortly after. I would hate to have to go through that again, much prefer to suffer a bit more now and see a reasonable decision about the time when it's right to ease the restrictions.
  • Posted by Tonyretals May 05, 2020 at 17:07

    What we are doing at the moment is not a ‘no risk strategy’. Many infections are still taking place. What is happening at the moment is controlled risk which will slowly be released in a manner that allows us to continue controlling the risk without jeopardising gains that have been made. As you comment we are trying to stop all avoidable deaths - not all deaths. Stoping avoidable deaths in this situation is in my opinion is a noble goal. To use the analogy regarding the motorway that another commentator used, we are currently being told to reduce our speed to 30 as there has been a major incident, as the situation progress we will be able to increase to 50 shortly and hopefully back up to 70 in time. Allowing people to continue at 70 now will just cause an even bigger ‘pile up’ .
  • Posted by OwenVickers May 05, 2020 at 17:58

    It is a difficult balance for the Govt to strike, but I fear they are now too focused on Covid and not enough on the other health and social impacts of lockdown which are quickly going to become far worse than the virus. And having frightened the public so much by Covid and conditioned us to believe that we must stay home, they may find it very difficult to explain why in fact some move back to normality is consistent with their over zealous comments about Covid to date. It is an awful virus, and I don’t envy the Govt the task of navigating through it, but they need to bing the debate back to a more balanced position. We live on a planet full of viruses and bacteria, and we cannot hide away unless we want to return to the Stone Age quite quickly.
  • Posted by codenamev May 05, 2020 at 18:00

    Agree with the original poster. This lock down policy cannot go on much longer. It's a form of torture for human beings. We are not designed to live like this. The 'cure' to the virus will be far worse than accepting the risk and adapting to live with it. We need to get back to old normal as soon as possible, the new normal being touted should only be temporary.
  • Posted by BiggGrumperz May 05, 2020 at 18:04

    We are now officially No. 2 in the world for Covid deaths. We've been clapping the NHS who have worked tirelessly (and lost lives) to protect us. Yet after only 6wks, we're prepared to risk going through it all over again? I have friends awaiting cancer treatment, my wife awaits a hysterectomy. What happens if we get another spike? What will you say to those selfless NHS workers then?
  • Posted by Llynn May 05, 2020 at 18:27

    Absolutely agree...every human endeavour involves risk and we all have the right to make our own choices.The Scottish government has enjoyed high public support and should now ease the lockdown by taking balanced risks.Most people acknowledge the severity of Covid 19 but they want their lives and their livelihoods back.
  • Posted by Engineer May 05, 2020 at 18:52

    This virus attacks the endothelium that line the blood vessels, organs and lymphatic system rather than just the lungs and is often spread asymptomatically which makes it far deadlier than influenza and explains the wide variety of symptoms. Were it not for the extreme measures that have been taken, the NHS would have been overwhelmed and the number of cases could have been doubled or even trebled. Therefore, any return to normality will have to be very gradual and with social distancing measures maintained, otherwise this virus will take hold again very quickly with a second wave far worse than the first and this is what the UK Government and regional parliaments all fear the most.
  • Posted by ProtestTheHero May 05, 2020 at 19:15

    Bold and brave sentiment, which I wholeheartedly agree with.
  • Posted by LAM May 05, 2020 at 21:54

    We need to take some measured risks - it is not acceptable or morally justifiable to seek to compel people to continue to isolate for an indefinite period. Please treat people like grown ups - give us information on where Covid-19 outbreaks are, for example (as happens in South Korea), and let us make our own personal decisions on how we mitigate the risks we are all facing. If people choose to stay home of course they should be supported to do so but not everyone in shielded or vulnerable groups will choose that. As someone in a more vulnerable group I will never choose to take any silly risks but I would take some measured ones, and my shielded friend would do the same.
  • Posted by crglkhrt May 05, 2020 at 22:41

    Agree - SG needs to reassess its approach with ALL things considered i.e. mental health, economic impact, etc.
  • Posted by Stephaniekeachie May 05, 2020 at 23:17

    100% agree we need a more balanced approached. The reporting of figures has been skewed and far from transparent. Dying with covid19 is different to dying because of it. It will be interesting to see what has happened to the number of deaths by other causes during the same period. If we were having a bad flu season which kills 600,000 people per year world wide the world economy wouldn’t have closed down. TB kills 6,000 people per day across the world. Life is for living and their is a degree of risk at the moment there is no quality of life for many who could be out working whilst still respecting social distancing. I fear that we have just created a huge economic and financial mess for our children to deal with when they are older especially when it now looks as though Covid19 has been in Europe since December
  • Posted by MairiM May 05, 2020 at 23:35

    Absolutely agree. There are approximately 50,000 deaths per year from sepsis - why hasnt government mobilised the entire health service in response to that!? The response to sepsis has been a few poxy posters stuck up around wards! When you consider how lax our powers that be (both the FM and the PM) have been about such known health risks, its angersome to see them now at daily briefings, having suddenly develop a conscience. Ive actually been tearful reading many of the comments on here this evening - people pleading to just be allowed to walk their dog near the calming water, promising not to go near anyone else. Its upsetting that this is what we've been forced to become.
  • Posted by OldDeuteronomy May 06, 2020 at 03:16

    Couldn't agree more with the risk strategy. Look at the falling levels of A&E attendances, heart, stroke and cancer diagnoses since Covid arrived on the scene. Disagree that 'years' is being melodramatic; I believe it's pretty spot on (unfortunately). The death toll to date is devastating although in all probability you're more likely to die falling from your bike or rolling your car on an empty road than from Covid. Life in lockdown is unsustainable in every sense. We need to be wary, yes, and to be responsible, but let's get on with 'life' as we once knew it.
  • Posted by lynnemacsween May 06, 2020 at 12:01

    Life is full of risks and as individuals we have to take responsibility for our own actions. Every death is a tragedy but as previous comments more deaths from other causes, where do we draw the line.......
  • Posted by LauraAR May 06, 2020 at 14:28

    I totally disagree. Preventable deaths are not acceptable. 'Imprisonment at home' is a lot better than dying, or more importantly, killing others. It's not a personal decision, you can't choose to avoid it or not, you could pick it up anywhere and at any time. You might be willing to take the risk because you think you'll be fine if you get it but the people you pass it onto didn't agree to that.
  • Posted by Edin1234 May 06, 2020 at 14:48

    Agree that we have to end lockdown soon and learn to live with the risk that the virus poses. We can do everything we can to mimimise the risk, but we have to accept that we're trying to control the uncontrollable. Lockdown is unsustainable and we need a clear plan for how we move forward. Really worry about the negative, potentially long-term effects on children and young people.
  • Posted by jrob May 06, 2020 at 15:16

    Absolutely agree.
  • Posted by BSL May 06, 2020 at 16:43

    The lockdown did what it intended to initially but the curve has flattened and more and more people are starting to ignore it. It’s time for a gradual easing of the lockdown starting now, not in another 3 weeks time. The NHS coped adequately with the first phase and if everyone maintains social distancing it should cope with any second phase
  • Posted by Mk1975 May 06, 2020 at 20:13

    Shield the elderly and vulnerable as they are making up the highest level of deaths and integrate the others back into a new normal. Tobacco, alcohol and obesity cause strain on the NHS and kill thousands each year but we’ve not banned them. Allow schools to go back as studies are showing children aren’t at risk and don’t transfer the disease to adults so no danger there. This will halt the future disparity in education between those children receiving virtual lessons and those not. Also those completing theirs lessons and those not. This allows the gradual introduction of people to the workplace which will stop future generations suffering tax burdens and loss of jobs. All of the above improves mental health of nation. Also stops the prioritising of elderly and infirm over people waiting with existing illnesses such as cancer and stops the future health time bomb were creating. Basing our current plans on guesses is a hugely dangerous way to go about this. Why the contribution is important Stops creating a future health time bomb that could kills thousands and re starts economy which stops future inequality as well as social issues and will go some way to stopping a tax burden on future generations.
  • Posted by Colin87 May 06, 2020 at 20:59

    I agree, I am sure that the SG is not proposing a no risk strategy but it does come across as this. Covid needs a strong but logical response whilst getting people back to work in the safest way possible. I am sure the SG does not want to stand up every day from now on to tell us about everyone who dies ever day for flu etc
  • Posted by Dougieo May 06, 2020 at 21:03

    Absolutely not okay to take the “risk”... this “risk” so far has attributed to 30k deaths in the uk
  • Posted by Debrastorr May 06, 2020 at 21:06

    Nonsense. Death rate is double normal. Covid-19 deaths are losing 11 years of life. I’m sorry for comfort is being disrupted but frankly, tough.
  • Posted by yebaws May 06, 2020 at 22:53

    Absolutely. The government need to look at the big picture. We could ban cars because they kill people. Or swimming because people drown. Or fatty foods. Or alcohol. And we need to look into the figures in a different way. The headline figure of 30K deaths is not all it seems. The vast majority of these deaths are of elderly people and people with underlying conditions. A significant number of them would have died anyway during the period. The headline figure should be the extra deaths due to CV-19, taking into account demographics and seasonal variations. Account should also be taken of the extra deaths that will happen / have happened because of the lockdown - undiagnosed cancers, late presentation coronary, a whole host of other medical conditions that would normally have been picked up by GP's. The government approach has been populist and "dumbed down" rather than intelligent an nuanced. the public are, as usual, treated like slightly simple children.
  • Posted by LauraJones May 07, 2020 at 08:36

    Agree. We need to accept some risks.
  • Posted by DennisThecat May 07, 2020 at 10:24

    I think the strategy is to avoid the NHS being overwhelmed. It is not to prevent every avoidable death. If our NHS had been better funded over the past decade we may not be in the situation we are in. (I worked for the NHS for 32 years). Therefore I believe we do need to accept more risk and start getting people back into a better frame of mind by easing the lockdown.
  • Posted by Alasdrum May 07, 2020 at 13:35

    I just read an article by Edinburgh University which suggests we could have an almost normal life while the virus persists as long as we shield the very high risk group and have regular extensive testing, particularly of carers and NHS staff. This sounds just like Sweden which has lower deaths per head than U.K. We should change strategy now and accept a little risk as the safe option will leave us all in poverty for years.
  • Posted by randomchaos May 07, 2020 at 15:26

    I completely agree. Stop treating us like children and allow us to think for ourselves. Believe it or not, I can make perfectly rationale and reasonable decisions without Sturgeon's help.
  • Posted by JoysieJ May 07, 2020 at 20:00

    I completely agree. There are risks to every day life. We should be treated like responsible adults. We have come to live with the flu (even though people die with that each year), but this doesn't result in a lockdown and a destruction of our economy.
  • Posted by NH May 07, 2020 at 20:35

    Too early to lift restrictions. We made the mistake of waiting too long to lockdown and don't want to make another mistake. Better to wait a bit longer and see what happens in other countries who are easing lockdown - what went well and what didn't. If we end up with a second wave of the virus it has a big impact on both health and the economy.
  • Posted by tmper May 07, 2020 at 23:09

    I add these comments for clarification and to counter some of the objections made. A. The phrase 'focused on preventing every avoidable death' is part of the 'strategy'. It is contained in the document listed at the top of the Ideas web site page where it says "On 23rd April 2020 we published “The Coronavirus(COVID-19): Framework for decision making”. Follow this link and in Section 1 you can find this text... “Every individual member of Scottish society matters and our entire strategy is focused on preventing every avoidable death. There is no such thing as a level of "acceptable loss". That is an approach which reflects our commitment to safeguarding human rights and upholding human dignity. It is the ethically correct approach to take. And it reflects the caring, compassionate and inclusive ethos of Scottish society.” B. A second wave of Coronavirus is a certainty. It is true that if all of the existing cases are identified and are either cured or die ; and this must include all of the asymptomatic carriers who show no symptoms; and that no visitors to this country at every border are allowed entry without quarantine and are then confirmed free of the virus, then there would be no second, third or subsequent waves. The probability of achieving this is a timescale of less than years is vanishingly small. Miss just one case and a few weeks later you have another wave and it starts again. C. Considerable cognitive damage will occur to a population denied social access. Humans are social animals and their mental wellbeing depends on social interaction. Loneliness also shortens life. Life is inherently dangerous, and we all live with many risks. Life needs to be lived. The stated strategy denies these rights and is thus wrong.
  • Posted by WilfredLawrieNicholasJohnson May 08, 2020 at 09:22

    It is not a 'no risk' strategy. Low risk probably at the present time. This is a soft lockdown when we look at what has been imposed in the likes of Spain and other European countries. There will be changes coming soon, we just need a bit more resolve.
  • Posted by TeaSpoonFairy May 08, 2020 at 13:22

    The fact that this disease's impact lies in the number of susceptible individuals (=everyone at the start of the epidemic) rather than in a given individuals risk of dying has been poorly communicated and caused avoidable anxiety in the population. Information that allows individuals to get an appreciation of their own risk of death from C-19 (which is about the same as your age-adjusted risk of dying this year from any cause, incidentally) and the societal effects stemming from the potential scale of spread would be a valuable contribution to the debate and make resuming activities post-lockdown easier for many.
  • Posted by FM79 May 08, 2020 at 14:08

    Agree. Life is full of risks and unfortunately people die every day. We cannot provent all deaths from covid, it's impossible. The current lockdown poses an even greater risk of long term physical and mental heath conditions, along with a destroyed economy that will take generations to repair. Its time to accept the risk and start moving forward.
  • Posted by erdabrown May 08, 2020 at 15:28

    Absolutely agree. What 89 year old grandparent wants their grandchildren to live in isolation with hugely damaging impairment to their development just so that they can live a a little longer in the care home.
  • Posted by Chimp May 08, 2020 at 15:35

    The 'cure' should not be doing more damage than the disease. Vast majority of all new transmissions are in care homes. General population should have an immediate 'easing' of restrictions, especially on outdoor activities where social distancing is easy (and in a lot of cases inevitable e.g. solo sailing).
  • Posted by gilldougall May 09, 2020 at 09:07

    Risk is part of life - we just don't think about that most of the time. Avoiding covid-19 will not make us immortal. Give people information and allow them to assess their own risk for this, as they do, even if they aren't aware they're doing it, for everything they choose to do, whether it's crossing the street or doing a bungee jump.
  • Posted by Stitchwort May 09, 2020 at 10:33

    Scottish Government says that they will ensure "that any restrictions are justified, necessary and proportionate". If that is the case, then as the original poster says, their 'no risk' strategy, is too restrictive and is not proportionate. We have already largely adopted appropriate physical distancing and hand hygiene. At some point we will have to be trusted to apply these measures in our daily lives.
  • Posted by XR May 09, 2020 at 11:22

    Risks are part of life. Refusing to take any risk is contrary to the essence of the human nature (not to mention the loss of our basics liberties and rights). Maybe the Scottish government should trust its citizens a bit more and only provide guidelines in the same ways the Swedish government trust its citizens.
  • Posted by GordonM May 09, 2020 at 11:54

    Agree with the sentiment - the current strategy is based around the majority doing the hard work and the government doing next to nothing - wait until you are nearly dead before contacting the NHS if you have Covid or any other serious condition - hospitals are empty and yet we have a claimed health crises - an odd situation to be in and of course indicative of the gross mismanagement of this pandemic. Lockdown is clearly not working and the consequences of the Scottish Governments actions will hurt the Scottish people for years to come. End the Lockdown and let the citizens manage their lives not politicians
  • Posted by waxwing May 09, 2020 at 14:32

    This is correct. We cannot continue a strategy which is "focused on preventing every avoidable death". If we implemented that in other areas of society we would close all roads in order to prevent accident deaths. There are lots of deaths from various infectious diseases which could be prevented by having a permanent lockdown but society cannot operate like that.
  • Posted by seileasdar May 09, 2020 at 15:36

    I'd rather not weight up the value of any single life against the financial implications of a lock down and 'incarceration'. It's inconvenient, yes, it will cause damage to financial income and the economy. But they can be rebuild - maybe even better and less focussed on wealth and consumerism. Try reviving your most dearest and closest loved one after the virus struck and they got into difficulties. It won't be the same anymore. I'd rather save lives than an overinflated hyperconsumerist world. They are far more precious.
  • Posted by JMB May 09, 2020 at 16:37

    Initial lockdown, yes. But to continue a ‘one size fits all’ approach to everyone - when we know which groups of people are most at risk - is not the way to go. The economic impact of this will also be huge bad that it itself is a health risk.
  • Posted by petermuir79 May 09, 2020 at 17:49

    100% agree. Need to look at risk of covid vs normal every day risk Currently the risk of myself passing away from Covid 19 is the same as me driving 185 miles a day (it was on the BBC the other day). I drive for a living and do in excess of 250mils a day 5 days a week. So let me back out and to do my job, before my job is no longer there for me.
  • Posted by AlJones May 09, 2020 at 22:18

    Totally agree with this post. Life is a risk. Some people are facing far bigger health risks than the virus and are being forced to accept a level of risk beyond that which they are comfortable with, because of the government’s actions. When did it become the case that Covid-19, deathly in only a small % of cases, became more important than the main killers in Scotland. Health is being hugely damaged by lockdown and yet here we are, enforcing an unhealthy lifestyle for all.
  • Posted by JulieColl May 10, 2020 at 09:33

    There is an element of risk in just about anything we do in life. We need to be allowed to decide what level of risk we are willing to take, then move on with our lives accordingly.
  • Posted by Henderson May 10, 2020 at 11:38

    There is a conversation under the heading of Publish Meaningful Mortality Figures, which I believe is essential in allowing the public to have some perspective when faced with deaths reported. National Records of Scotland has published up to week 3rd of May deaths involving Covid 19 have been 75% (2097) over age 75, 1% (19) under the age of 44 and 0% under the age of 14. There is a high risk to certain vulnerable people in the population and lower one in others. Going forward the government have to trust us to make informed decisions as adults and take some personal responsibility to stop the spread of this virus. The long term effects on the NHS of the fallout from consequential physical and mental health could be immense. We need some balance.
  • Posted by conniel May 10, 2020 at 11:40

    The UK and devolved governments are having to balance the risk to life against the cost of the lockdown. It may be helpful for the public to see some quantification from the modelling of the number of lives saved versus the economic impact of the lockdown measures, and how that varies if certain measures are changed.
  • Posted by fja1980 May 10, 2020 at 12:10

    Agree with many of the points above. The inconsistency in how deaths are reported worldwide means we cannot compare to other country statistics. I do not agree with reporting a death as covid if no positive test has ever confirmed it. There should be a consistent approach worldwide to truly establish the death rate due to this virus. The number of confirmed cases is very much lower than what is suspected to be the true number which further dilutes risk per age. There needs to be a balanced approach moving forward. Many of us are worried we/spouse will have a job as the months progress and furlough payment phased out.
  • Posted by Charlotta May 10, 2020 at 16:14

    100% agree with this and the points 'Mk1975' posted on May 06, 2020 at 20:13
  • Posted by geforse1 May 10, 2020 at 17:09

    Whilst I concur that the initial lockdown phase was necessary to get the rate of infection under control (due the inept management of the impending crisis by both the UK and Scottish Governments), the subsequent extensions have been draconian and disproportionate in terms of overall risk to society in terms of mortality. Any death is tragic, whether from Covid or any other illness, however the numbers are still a relatively small proportion of the total deaths that occur (both for Scotland and the UK as a whole) - unfortunately they will never be zero. The extensions have almost certainly contributed to more non-Covid related deaths than genuine Covid cases (particularly when casre homes are excluded). The governments should present a more balanced presentation of the full facts, rather than the over dramatisation based on very focused data, which is clearly politically driven.
  • Posted by carerbear May 10, 2020 at 18:09

    Totally agree
  • Posted by nltcthgc May 10, 2020 at 20:55

    A very good idea. A common sense approach does work if you trust your population to be sensible. The majority of people are behaving sensibly and social distancing appropriately. There will always be minor transgressions, but that is ok. The majority of drivers drive at least slightly over the speed limit, but we don't take this kind of heavy handed approach over a few excess road traffic accident deaths. Sweden is proof that a minimal lockdown is not disastrous. While the headline death figures thrust on us by the media look terrible, taken in context and perspective, they are not that different to many other illnesses and a lot less than many more. Considering that 3 million children a year die from malnutrition in a world plagued with obesity should help put covid 19 in perspective. The oft quoted R number is a poor estimate of the infection rate as we have no idea how many people have been infected. It should not be used as a validation for extending the lockdown. A vaccine is not guaranteed, even in 12 to 18 months. A vaccine is very unlikely to be 100% effective. Consider the flu and the fact that hundreds of thousands of people still die from it annually despite a vaccine being available. Based on scientific history, it is almost certain a cure will not be found for many, many years, if at all. You would never know if someone had the virus as the scientific experts are telling us 80% of people will experience very mild symptoms or none at all. Given the above, when will people feel that it is safe to lift the lockdown? If the hospitals are now geared up to cope with a spike in cases, the lockdown should be lifted completely. Protect the vulnerable, but let them make their own decisions about risk. I have elderly parents and many friends in the vulnerable category who are desperate to get out and about as normal, because they have earned the right to manage the risks themselves. To date, 1857 people have died with (not of, the difference is important) vivid 19 in Scotland. It is sad when anyone dies, but this is by no means a catastrophe and should certainly not be compared to war like many politicians have done - that does a great disservice to the millions of men, women and children who gave their lives to the real horrors of war. Obesity and it's associated diseases of diabetes, cardiovascular disease and several cancers kills many times more lives every year than covid 19 ever will. If the Scottish government really wanted to save lives, they'd save far more by getting people to exercise and lead healthier lifestyles than any lockdown ever will. It's ironic that the scientists and doctors are saying the best way to protect yourself from covid 19 is to stay fit and healthy, yet the lockdown restrictions prevent millions of people from doing that. Lift the lockdown, let people live their lives and make their own decisions about risk. I am 48 years old and would give my life for my children's freedom. I'm sure most parents and grandparents would to. This is nothing to do with the economy, this is about putting our children first, they are the most vulnerable people in our society and should always come first. Thank you for listening, but please do your own research and make your own judgements.
  • Posted by jeankemp May 11, 2020 at 02:02

    The discussion of risk is the wrong discussion to be having.! The question ought to be "Do we want to eliminate this virus". If we do, then we have we have to control the continuing number of deaths, in order that the Test, Trace and Isolate policy has a chance of success. To achieve that we have to maintain lockdown for a while. To let this virus rampage through the summer will not bring back the "normality" so many people desire. It will lead to more untold suffering - and maybe the NHS will not cope the next time round!
  • Posted by Henderson May 11, 2020 at 10:15

    The virus is here to stay. We have to manage it while not losing sight of the long term damage to the education of our children, the mental health of our nation, the deaths that will occur if we don’t restart the treatment of cancer patients and other life threatening diseases. The list goes on. We have to be trusted to take personal responsibility.
  • Posted by sconnor May 11, 2020 at 12:27

    We have to prioritise getting people back to work whilst continuing to protect the 'shielding' group. This can be achieved on a phased basis whilst avoiding any mass influx of people returning at once and overcrowding public transport, workspaces, etc. We must prioritise getting the economy back up and running whilst accepting that there will be risks involved for those who return to work. The risks can be managed, mitigated and minimised.
  • Posted by Gi May 11, 2020 at 12:36

    The economy doesn’t matter if you are dead. Increasing risk is a terrible and selfish idea. People need to learn from history and take this seriously. Human lives first over all else.
  • Posted by Cathol May 11, 2020 at 14:03

    Isolating the healthy will reduce to reduced immunity to day to day contagion’s. If we are not exposed their will insufficient immunity across the population. The Flu is widespread, vaccine’s are only for those at high risk so why would it be any different for covid 19... It is now evident that covid 19 is not deadly to everyone, protect those most at risk and focus on treatment methods for those whose immune response is causing deaths. Deaths have/are/will increase from other causes, a massive drop in cancer referrals, increase in deaths at home. General health will deteriorate and will put a bigger strain on the NHS going forward. Care home deaths are the largest %, yet they have been locked down longer suggesting infections are coming in via asymptomatic staff.
  • Posted by RuthBradley May 11, 2020 at 14:43

    Important to approach of Hierarchy of Risk as we move to reopen In all settings identify the most at risk groupings and the allocation of duty of care to mitigate those risks and give timely and effective guidelines to sectors on best practice for risk mitigation. examples: Schools: Staff are highest risk...good to divide staff in to teams similar to healthcare. Green Team of admin and non-contact staff teaching staff who continue to deliver teaching remotely; Red team of pupil facing contact low risk staff with training, protocols and ppe where necessary. Families would need to accept some degree of increased risk of contagion between children and children of shielders may need separate provision. Retail: Staff are highest risk and duty of care of management to safeguard them with appropriate premises layouts and integrated infection control plan and training. The style of Argos and Screwfix which limits public access to the retail premises to a Hot Zone entrance area is ideal. Public should be required to wear facemasks (cloth acceptable) in indoor retail areas to limit contamination and reduce risk to staff and other shoppers from fomites and contaminated air.
  • Posted by Zaffarella May 11, 2020 at 14:57

    I fully appreciate there are difficult choices, however, social distancing continued much longer will ultimately kill more people than Covid 19 and certainly kill society. Government must be greatest good for greatest number. Now that lockdown has gained the time to put capacity in place the “stay safe” narrative will need to change to reflect; Fatal for less than 1% Vast majority (over 80%) asymptomatic or mild; relatively few have required hospitalisation. Current strain is fairly narrow in its target. People die; in Scotland 4,700 people, on average, each month every year (average 2001-2019 per NRS). There were 1,559 Covid deaths in Scotland as at 2 May. Many of those dying with Covid 19 on the death certificate (but not necessarily a contributory factor) would have died in any event this year. May never be vaccine; it would wrong and very costly to society at large to wait for one – accordingly we must manage this. Covid 19 now endemic and should be dealt with like any other perennial virus. Going forward Covid 19 can be managed by creating capacity (Infectious diseases hospitals?). Unfortunately, those in care homes are amongst the most susceptible to the virus, some form of gateway regime or system for entrance to care homes will be required. Fitness (substantially issues caused by obesity) makes a massive difference to outcome; this is an opportunity to reinforce that being fit will save lives and the NHS I am glad to see that the Swedish approach has now been commended by the WHO as an exemplar for moving forward. Although it has controls, it has allowed more social interaction. This approach will certainly have reduced any “future wave”. As at 11 May, the UK (with a population 6.56 times that of Sweden) has had 31,855 deaths. Sweden has recorded 3,225 deaths. That is 66.4% of the UK total. The Swedish approach has to be considered, as it is less damaging to society and the economy at large.
  • Posted by MikeJohnston May 11, 2020 at 16:35

    Look at idea: What is the acceptable level of death?
  • Posted by rptcal May 11, 2020 at 18:35

    This could work as long as Social Distancing, face coverings, wash stations, etc. are used. As far as I have seen so far, Social Distancing isn't really being observed very well. If more people are going to be in circulation, it needs to be enforced.
  • Posted by Brett May 11, 2020 at 18:57

    There will always be a degree of risk in any action taken. In my opinion the stance taken by Scot Gov at the moment is the correct one. Reducing harm. That harm has many forms and will continue to be a challenge in the months ahead. The current position enables incremental change offering clear, considered and consistent advice to the nation. Each death is heart breaking to hear about. In the actions we take going forward we must ensure that we can look back and at the very least say that we have acted with care and compassion. Planning undertaken now will also have benefits for the longer term. Rushing to an ill advised quick judgement would have huge repercussions. This virus isn't going anywhere and we should recognise this in our planning. Measures we put in place now can be adapted but they should mindful of their medium term use ie. until a treatment or vaccine can be found and is available for use. I am not niave, the change that I wish to see may not happen. However if we fail to recognise and act in the interests of the people of this country at this time. I would ask, if not now, when? The respect for keyworkers by the people of this country has been obvious and this will broaden as more people return to their roles. It should not be forgotten that when we clap for keyworkers or veterans. That currently they reply on charities to pick up the slack from under funding. Neither are charities. It is admirable to protect workers at home on furlough and business with grants. To upscale NHS capacity and investment. It must not be the case that a new normal forgets the lessons of the past. Change should happen. It should happen incrementally in a safe and sustainable manner. The framework principles and measures are spot on and it should always remain a priority to: Reduce harm Maintain support Respect and renew our nation.
  • Posted by IMcK May 11, 2020 at 20:40

    There are risks on both sides of these decisions, and I agree that some coronavirus risk should be tolerated where we can lower the risk of domestic abuse, depression, anxiety etc.
  • Posted by Kgal May 11, 2020 at 20:45

    I completely agree with this. I am almost certain that this is extended lockdown will do more damage than the virus. You acknowledge in your framework document that the restrictions themselves are causing harm to people, the economy and society. We need a detailed assessment of those risks immediately and public debate so the risks on both sides can be weighed up. That process needs to be transparent, as does the sharing of any models etc which you are currently using to inform current lockdown policy. For example, is there any specific evidence to show that lockdown (as opposed to say social distancing measures only) is more effective in suppressing the virus? (see e.g. the position in Sweden and also recent findings from New York showing largest percentage of infections arise in people who have been "staying at home"). I also think the focus on cumulative death figures in isolation is very unhelpful for informing the public about what the true risk might be to them in relation to the virus. For example, the risk to healthy under 45s is so minimal but that message is not effectively communicated. For example, you have parents and teachers terrified to go back to school. People take risks everyday but because they don't get the same coverage people simply get on with their lives. It is like a message flashing up on your dashboard every time you started your car to say "your odds of having a car crash on this journey will be 1 in x". The general public need to be given those tools to help with weighing up the real risk to them, relative to all the other risks they may take in life on a daily basis.
  • Posted by Bek2020 May 11, 2020 at 21:15

    Lockdown is to stop the NHS from being overwhelmed and therefore lockdown has served its purpose. There is risk in everyday life and the Scottish Government is not pursuing as reasonable strategy in continuing lockdown. Social distancing is what stops the spread of the virus and COVID-190 also is particularly bad for certain groups of people. With some wise restrictions in place to shield these groups, the rest of us should be allowed to return to a relatively normal life.
Log in or register to add comments and rate ideas