LONDON (Reuters) – The nine cases of the Omicron coronavirus variant in Scotland were all linked to the same private event, and none of the people who had tested positive for the variant had required hospital treatment, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Tuesday.
The Scottish cases account for the majority of the 14 cases of Omicron so far reported in Britain, and Sturgeon said that none of the nine Scottish cases appeared to be associated with travel from Southern Africa.
“All nine cases are linked. They all trace back to a single private event on the 20th of November,” Sturgeon told the Scottish parliament.
“We fully expect that there will be more cases identified over the coming days that are also linked to this event… however, the fact that all known cases are so far linked to this single event suggests that community transmission may still be limited.”
Sturgeon said that a review of PCR samples results that could be Omicron had now looked back as far as November 1, but the timelines for the spread of the variant still did not suggest a link to the COP26 climate change conference in Glasgow.
“There is so far nothing in the wider look back exercise that Public Health Scotland has undertaken to suggest that community transmission of the new variant is either sustained or widespread,” she said.
(Reporting by Alistair Smout, Edited by Paul Sandle)