Covid-19 in Scotland: What are the current rules and where can you get a lateral flow test?

Cases of Covid-19 have now risen to one in 20 in Scotland. 

Covid-19 rates are rising in Scotland.

Around one in 20 people were infected with Covid-19 in Scotland in the week up to 17 June 2022, according to figures released by the Office for National Statistics.

That equates to around 250,700 people - a rise from the 176,000 estimated from the week prior.

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Public Health Scotland reported that between 13 June and 19 June 2022 there were an average of 2,220 cases of Covid-19 in Scotland - which is a 30.5% increase on the previous seven days.

There have been 1,990,859 cases of Covid-19 in Scotland since the start of the pandemic.

The rise in cases has not led to a large jump in hospital admissions, in the same time period there has been just 101 people admitted to hospital and 20 to an ICU.

The rise in cases may be linked to an increase in activities due to the summer weather and the return of large scale concerts, which were unable to happen for the previous two years.

The new variants BA.4 and BA.5 may also be a factor as they are believed to be more infectious.

What are the current Covid-19 rules and restrictions in Scotland?

All Covid rules were lifted in Scotland from May 2022.

However, the Scottish Government is still issuing advice for anyone who gets the infection.

The official Public Health advice is to stay home if a fever develops or a person feels unwell.

Symptoms to look out for include: a continuous cough, a high temperature, a loss of taste or smell, unexplained tiredness, muscle aches and long headaches.

There is no time limit on the advice to stay home, only that people should remain at home until they no longer have a fever or feel well enough to go out again.

However, NHS Scotland advises that anyone who has had a positive test result should stay home for five days (either from the day the test is taken or from when symptoms began).

NHS Scotland also advises that children under 18 should stay at home for three days after a positive test result.

The Scottish Government is recommending people to get the vaccine to ensure protection against the virus.

They are also suggesting opening windows when socialising indoors, wearing face coverings inside public places and on public transport and to continue to wash hands.

Testing is now only free for a few categories of people.

When to test for Covid-19?

Free testing is now only available for specific groups of people in Scotland. It is still open for those who work in the NHS or social care.

People with health conditions and those due to go into hospital for surgery or a procedure are also still able to acquire tests.

They are also available for those visiting hospitals or care homes. Unpaid carers and those applying for the self-isolation support grant can also receive a test.

If eligible a person may order a rapid lateral flow test every three days - a pack contains seven tests. They usually arrive within three days.

Where can I get a lateral flow test in Glasgow?

If you are eligible to receive a free lateral flow test you can order them online via the Government website here or call 119.

If you do not qualify for a free test then it is possible to acquire tests from other locations.

For example if you are travelling to a country that requires a negative test before entering then you can book a Rapid Antigen Test for £55 at Glasgow Airport.

However, this is only necessary if not fully vaccinated - in most cases a vaccine passport is now aqdequte for international travel.

Larger supermarkets, such as the Tesco Extra in Maryhill, are selling single lateral flow tests for £2 each. High street retailer Boots also sells at home tests from £3.95.