NHS Dumfries & Galloway

First COVID-19 cases in Dumfries and Galloway

Coronavirus cases now confirmed within Dumfries and Galloway

NHS Dumfries and Galloway can confirm that two people from within the region have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19).

These mark the first confirmed diagnoses of COVID-19 within the region, but cases had been expected in Dumfries and Galloway – with numbers across Scotland as a whole having now increased to stand at 227.

There are a further two presumptive cases in Dumfries and Galloway, which are currently being treated as being COVID-19.

Medical Director Dr Kenneth Donaldson said: “Diligent work by clinicians carrying out tests on people who may have been exposed to COVID-19 has resulted in our first two cases being identified and confirmed.

“Identifying coronavirus cases allows us to take steps to isolate and slow the spread of the virus.

“It is important to remember that for the very large majority of people who become infected this will be a mild illness, but preparations have been put in place to ensure medical support when that is required.”

Since the first reports in China, Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership has been working to prepare a suite of local arrangements in anticipation of the virus reaching the UK.

A large team of key figures spanning primary care, acute care and social care is meeting regularly to take forward these arrangements. Information is being shared across the workforce, and with the public – who have a key role to play in helping to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Current advice stresses the need to ensure good hygiene, regularly cleaning hands, and using disposable tissues for coughs and sneezes. It also directs people not to enter public areas such as GP practices if they feel there is a risk they may have been exposed to coronavirus – instead asking them to go home and either call their GP or call the new NHS Inform number dedicated to COVID-19, which is 0800 028 2816.
Everyone can help support the UK’s response by:

• Following public health authorities’ advice, for example on hand washing, self-isolation and social distancing.

• Being understanding of the pressures the health and social care systems may be under, and receptive to changes that may be needed to the provision of care to you and your family.

• Accepting that the advice for managing COVID-19 for most people will be self-isolation at home and simple over the counter medicines

• Checking for new advice as the situation changes.

• The latest numbers of test results are published at 2pm each day on the Scottish Government website.

• Updates on public health advice for coronavirus can be found on the NHS Inform website, and a free helpline has also been set up for those who do not have symptoms but are looking for general health advice: 0800 028 2816.