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Age Scotland responds to national lockdown news

Published on 04 January 2021 04:17 PM

Age Scotland has responded to news that Scotland is set to enter a period of full national lockdown from midnight tomorrow (Tuesday 5 January).

The charity’s Head of Policy and Communications, Adam Stachura, said:

“These measures are no doubt necessary to get to grips with the rapid spread of the virus. However, this return to a national lockdown similar to March of last year will be a bitter pill to swallow, particularly for the hundreds of thousands of older people living alone.

“The thought of enduring another lockdown without face-to-face contact with family or friends will be extremely difficult but this is clearly not a decision that has been taken lightly.

“We have seen the toll this virus has already taken on Scotland’s older population and, while the continuation of the vaccine rollout offers some peace of mind, the new faster spreading variant is cause for concern and makes these new measures essential.

“The past year has proven that periods of prolonged isolation can have a profound impact on mental and physical health but, by reaching out and offering support where possible, we can all play our part in alleviating the impact of lockdown loneliness.

“At the beginning of the pandemic, we saw an incredible outpouring of support, with people volunteering across the country to help with food delivery, collecting prescriptions – or simply a friendly phone call or doorstep chat. With shielding guidance expected soon, many older people may once again need help getting food and other essentials. We hope to see a continuation of this community support and would urge people to look out for older friends, neighbours and relatives they know will be affected by this guidance.

“Back in October, we asked the Scottish Government to develop a winter action plan to support older people, particularly if we had another lockdown. It is vital that they make available and ensure a full range of support to those who need help with accessing food, and medical attention and prescriptions. These were considerable challenges for older people last spring and they mustn’t have the same difficulty this time around.

“We want older people to know that we are there for them. Our free Helpline is available to offer advice, information and friendship to anyone who needs it. Please don’t hesitate to give us a call on 0800 12 44 222. As we re-enter a state of national lockdown, older people need to know they are not facing this difficult period alone.”

Contact Age Scotland's media team:

Age Scotland provides a seven day a week response service to media enquiries through a dedicated telephone line and email.

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