Covid Scotland: Almost one in ten cases are reinfections, Public Health Scotland estimates

Just over 8 per cent of Covid cases reported last week were reinfections, according to new figures from Public Health Scotland (PHS).

By Elsa Maishman
Wednesday, 2nd March 2022, 3:41 pm

It comes as the Scottish Government began including reinfections in its daily reported figures of cases and deaths for the first time from Wednesday.

Previously, only individuals testing positive for the first time were included in the figures. These will now also take account of those who test positive again at least 90 days after their last positive test, and have been updated retrospectively by PHS.

This change was made in England from the start of February, meaning case numbers have not been directly comparable between the two nations over the past month.

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A woman uses a swab to take a sample from her mouth at a NHS Test and Trace Covid-19 testing unit. Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images

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Announcing in early February that Scotland would echo this move, Nicola Sturgeon said data on reinfections would become “more important” as the pandemic progressed and more people contracted Covid for a second time.

Some 8,725 new cases of Covid were reported on Wednesday, alongside 20 deaths.

Meanwhile figures from PHS showed 3,601 cases reported in the week to February 27 were reinfections, accounting for 8.4 per cent of the total.

In January some 9.8 per cent of cases were estimated to be reinfections.

The Omicron variant of Covid-19 is believed to offer less immunity from a first infection, making second or further infections more common.

During the rest of the pandemic before Omicron, the reinfection rate in Scotland was as low as 0.6 per cent.

A total of 42,616 new cases were reported last week, a 10 per cent decrease on the week before.

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