Scotsman editorial and Ian Murray blame Sturgeon and repeat care home death myths

Regulars here will know that I and many of you have batted this stuff back with evidence more than once.

I wonder if the First Minister’s refusal to contradict the accusers with the same evidence just invites more or is her strategy more intelligent than that?

Anyhow, terrier-like as always, the notion that ‘she’ faces ‘serious questions’ over ‘the death toll in Scotland’s care homes’ is sheer nonsense.

I’m not going to refer to the evidence here. It’s all in the blog archives. All points made can be backed up.

Once more, the initial death toll in care homes and elsewhere was due to the delayed lock-down and faulty advice to care homes which was down entirely to the SAGE advisers and the Conservative Government’s domination of the 4 Nations approach. Once power was devolved at the end of March, Scotland with the FM at the helm diverged hard and fast and care home deaths are now lower per capita than in England.

Those discharged from hospitals did not die because of that nor did they infect the homes. There is clear published research evidence that agency staff movements and infection control failures in private homes are to blame.

There were no guidance failures given that care homes have decades of experience in isolation and PPE-use after repeated norovirus and flu outbreaks.

There was no major PPE shortage though English providers did deny supplies to Scottish homes on clear guidance from Public Health England instructed in turn by Matt Hancock. Also, UK Government trade departments did deny Scottish health boards links to overseas providers.

If anyone needs to answer serious questions, it is the PM, his advisers and care home owners.

15 thoughts on “Scotsman editorial and Ian Murray blame Sturgeon and repeat care home death myths”




  2. Some more evidence as to the reality of the situation then in Scotland and England from one who knows what he is talking about. Extract and link provided.

    I”t’s not politicians, officials, and NHS managers who admit or discharge hospital patients but doctors, working alongside multidisciplinary clinical teams. Many of us clearly were—in good faith, and for understandable reasons in that early pandemic context—sending people to care homes with or without covid-19 testing. We also bear responsibility and shouldn’t seek to deflect all of the blame.

    But remember that, in March and early April, even acute hospitals struggled to get covid-19 testing for our own patients or staff, the turnaround time was often days, and we now know that first tests are negative in around one in three cases where people go on to test positive. The links are not clear between testing positive or negative and being infective to others or how long a “safe” period of quarantine is.13 Indeed, someone could test negative, leave hospital, and then test positive days later in a care home. And a care home resident stuck in hospital could contract covid-19 while there, avoidably.

    The road not taken
    Recent research from the London School of Economics has suggested that not all care home outbreaks have been seeded from hospital transfers, with the staff themselves being vectors, especially agency staff working across multiple settings, and with staff often going between residents’ rooms to give care.14

    But let’s just imagine the counterfactual: the road not taken. How would people have reacted if large numbers of acute beds, in a country with one of the lowest (and fullest) per capita bed bases in the Western world,15 had been taken up for weeks by medically stable care home residents, away from their families and familiar staff? And, despite media accounts from the care home sector about struggles to get patients seen or conveyed to hospital by NHS teams, I’ve yet to see robust data on residents who died from covid-19, or other causes, who would have been saved by acute hospital treatment and were denied it.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Professor Bell and colleagues suggest that by emptying hospital beds to prepare for a potential influx of covid-19 patients the “normal place of death” shifted for a large number of people. Any assessment of “excess deaths” in Scottish care homes should be viewed in that context. the rise in deaths in Scottish care homes may be due in part to a reduction in the flow from care homes to hospitals as a preventative measure to ensure hospitals could cope. (Flawed modelling of the number of deaths that could reasonably be anticipated might have affected decision making.)


  4. Well, the FM is getting rather angry at Jackson Carlaw for talking mince, telling him to look at the uk gov website for figures proving Scotland has better virus numbers – FMs questions on the radio.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yup. Carlot more or less accused Sturgeon of lying, only for Sturgeon to repeat the actual death figures for the last month, handing Carlot his arse to play with.
      2,000 deaths in England.
      9 deaths in Scotland.
      9 or 2,000, which is higher?
      An astonishing attack line for the florid one to pursue. Even his supporters, behind him, were silent. Was Ruthie there? Never saw her—perhaps getting measured up for her Ermine Cloak (of darkness).

      We wait to see how Repressing Scotland report this exchange.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I don’t blame her he is a waste of space,on another note have any of you noticed the difference in the audio between BBC1 and 9 I always have to turn up the volume on channel 9 have asked them why but no reply.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, same here with the volume.

        I was astounded by the apparent lack of… not sure what… awareness? self-awareness? conscience? Pick your own lack and insert. A CONSERVATIVE accusing anybody at all of making up figures to fiddle stats. Mind-boggling.


  5. English/British nationalist propaganda as espoused by rags like the Scotsman will only get shriller as the Holyrood election [de facto referendum?] approaches.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Now, someone ought to point wonderboy from stv towards the Scotsman. THAT’S how you write a negative article whilst pretending to be balanced.

    As a fellow sufferer of dyscalculia, I do recommend the editorial writer gets theirs dealt with.

    “More than half of coronavirus deaths in Scotland took place in care homes”.

    I think I’m right, but I’ll double-check – 46.4% ISN’T more than half, is it? Tragically high, but not above 50%…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oops! Obviously trying to cook the books by fiddling figures.

      That should be 46.5%. Which may POSSIBLY be more than half. But I don’t think so…

      Liked by 1 person

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