An Aberdeenshire MSP has called for clear Covid guidance on when essential health workers and volunteers aged 70 and over can return to work.
Under current guidance, updated on May 28, over-70s who do not have a medical condition are now allowed to sit in parks and open areas and meet with one household while outside.
However, those who fall within that age category still remain at “increased risk” of severe illness from Covid-19 and must adhere to strict social distancing measures.
Aberdeenshire West MSP Alexander Burnett has asked government ministers to clear up the advice for people who may be expected to work, after being contacted by an occupational therapist and a health worker in his constituency.
Speaking during a virtual portfolio question session at Holyrood, he asked Christine McKelvie, Scottish Government minister for Older People, what measures the government was taking to clarify the latest guidance.
She said: “On the particular question around workplaces, I will take that back to my Fair Work colleagues and double check what they’re doing in that but I have to say the survey that we put out this week… if Alexander Burnett has particular constituents in this category or if anyone else has constituents in this category, could we ask them to do this survey, as this will inform these next steps?”
She added: “Those over 70 are still at increased risk of severe illness from Covid-19 and should be particularly careful at following physical distancing measures along with hand washing and good cough hygiene.
If they do not have an underlying condition, they need to have clear guidance about that.”
Alexander Burnett, Aberdeenshire West MSP.
Following the virtual session, Mr Burnett said: “Many people over 70 are going to be asked, or have been asked, to go back to fulfil key roles.
“I have heard from constituents in health care in particular, who want to know what their rights and responsibilities are. If they do not have an underlying condition, they need to have clear guidance about that.”
The Scottish Government has been contacted for comment.