By Marc Ellison
Data journalist, BBC Scotland
By Andrew Picken
BBC Scotland News
The rollout of community coronavirus vaccinations has begun in Scotland.
BBC Radio ScotlandCopyright: Getty Images
NHS and healthcare staff are “really overworked” and “coming to the end of their tether” as they prepare for an anticipated rise in Covid cases and hospital admissions over the next month, according to one of Scotland’s top clinicians.
Professor Michael Griffin, President of the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburgh, said the NHS has “coped extremely well in Scotland, more so than most places in the UK” until now, even in "very difficult" areas such as Glasgow and Lanarkshire.
“Staff wellbeing is a real concern across the board, not just doctors and nurses but all the healthcare workers who are providing support," he told BBC Radio Scotland. "This new variant has really changed the game and is very, very serious.”
Prof Griffin says the number of infections from the new Covid variant will increase over the next month, with the effect of the Christmas Day relaxation of rules and the new lockdown only apparent over the coming weeks.
He also urged the public to avoid other activities which heap more pressure on the NHS, with a surge in people falling over in wintry conditions and breaking bones.
"It just adds more work at a difficult time,” he added. “Some of the elderly who fall and break hips require major surgery. That in itself is a risk, particularly in a Covid-rich environment.”
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