Wednesday 22 December 2021

Scottish Government COVID-19 Update 21/12/21


Yesterday the First Minister delivered a statement to Parliament and outlined additional measures Cabinet considers necessary to help stem the increase in COVID-19 cases, safeguard health and protect the NHS, the emergency services and the economy while the booster vaccination programme is completed.


The First Minister confirmed that advice relating to Christmas was unchanged but stressed the need for people to reduce contacts with other households as much as possible in the lead up. She said people should keep family celebrations as safe as possible by keeping gatherings as small as circumstances allow and to make sure everyone does a test shortly before getting together.

Further measures to slow the spread of the Omicron variant include:


  • From 05:00 on 26 December, large events will be limited to 100 people for indoor standing events, 200 people for indoor seated events, and 500 people for all outdoor events seated or standing.
  • From 05:00 on 27 December there will be a requirement for one metre physical distancing between adults in all indoor hospitality and leisure settings. This includes pubs, bars, restaurants, cafes and other settings where food and drink is served for consumption on-site. Table service will be required in settings where alcohol is served for consumption on the premises. Leisure settings including gyms, theatres, cinemas, bingo and snooker halls, bowling alleys, museums, galleries and other visitor attractions are also included.
  • Physical distancing will not be required in places of worship or on public transport, however existing mitigations will continue to apply.

A package totalling £375 million, including £175 million of additional funding from the Treasury, will be made available to support sectors affected by the latest protective measures. An update will be provided on the breakdown and allocation of funding as soon as possible.

Ministers will also consider how COVID certification could be expanded to cover a wider range of indoor settings to support them remaining open once the booster programme is complete.

Guidance for call centres and customer contact centre environments on safe operation during the pandemic has been updated.  



Guidance for businesses and workplaces on reducing the risk of COVID-19 and supporting staff and customers has been updated to enable businesses to take reasonable measures to limit the rapid spread of the Omicron variant.


The NHS Inform coronavirus webpage is the fastest way for people to get the latest health advice and information.