A panic about contact tracing in Minnesota, United States, spread after Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington said that they were “contact tracing” protestors there.  “As we’ve begun making arrests, we have begun analysing the data of who we have arrested and begun actually doing what we think is almost pretty similar to our Covid [strategy]. […]

Why outsourcing and secrecy is the route to contact tracing and testing failure


The UK is going Korean. Having led with a herd immunity approach to this crisis, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is now said to be convinced that South Korea’s “test, trace, isolate” is the model for Britain. That means forcing the rate of transmission down low through the lockdown, and at the same time building a […]

Putting the genie back in the bottle



Front-line workers are making their voices heard. The Scottish Government has been sent not one, but two, open letters from those we most rely on to battle Covid-19, expressing their unhappiness at insufficient and inadequate PPE. 100 medical professionals have signed a letter stating they have “grave concerns about the adequacy of what has been […]

Why testing is the problem that won’t go away


It’s there in black and white on the Scottish Government website: ‘People should avoid travelling unless it is essential…This guidance is for people planning to visit second homes…”. That the Chief Medical Officer Catherine Calderwood broke that rule not once but twice is very bad. But the government mishandling thereafter raises more questions than the […]

A tortuous Sunday


There are worrying signs about the UK’s Covid-19 trajectory. The UK’s death toll is now higher than Italy’s was at this stage, and is following the US in accelerating when other countries were by now seeing the rate of increase slowing. ITV Political Editor Robert Peston responded to that fact by stating plainly: “This is […]

The (lack of) testing scandal


Just before hundreds of thousands across Scotland and the UK cheered on the NHS last night, I had a conversation with a nurse in Glasgow working in the emergency department, i.e. on the COVID-19 frontline. She told me that “colleagues are writing wills and getting life insurance in order”. They’ve still not been tested, though there […]

The real face of Lord Kitchener