‘Very good reasons’ to test Prince Charles for coronavirus


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Prince Charles and his wife Camilla were tested for coronavirus by NHS Grampian

There were “very good reasons” to test Prince Charles for coronavirus, Scotland’s chief medical officer has insisted.

The heir to the throne is currently in isolation in Aberdeenshire after testing positive for Covid-19.

Questions have been raised over why he was eligible for a test from NHS Grampian while many frontline medical workers have been unable to get them.

Catherine Calderwood said the prince had been tested for “clinical reasons”.

Clarence House announced on Wednesday that the Prince of Wales – who is known as the Duke of Rothesay in Scotland – had tested positive for the virus.

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A spokesman said the 71-year-old prince had “mild symptoms” but was in good health and spirits, and was working from home from his residence at Birkhall, on the Balmoral estate.

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Catherine Calderwood said she had spoken to NHS Grampian staff who looked after the Prince

His wife Camilla, 72, was also tested for the virus, but the result was negative.

Clarence House said the couple “met the criteria required for testing”, but the NHS Scotland website states that “generally” people are only tested if they have “a serious illness that requires admission to hospital”.

SNP MSP Joan McAlpine wished Prince Charles a speedy recovery, but added: “Given that his symptoms are said to be mild, like many I wonder how he was tested when many NHS and social care workers cannot get tested.”

Ms Calderwood defended the decision during an interview with the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland programme.

She said: “I have spoken to the team in Grampian who were looking after the individual.

“My understanding is there were very good reasons for that person and his wife to be tested, and obviously I wouldn’t be able to disclose anything else that I know because of patient confidentiality.”

Questions have also been raised about why the Prince was allowed to travel to Scotland after he had started to show mild symptoms.

People have been urged not to use second homes or holiday lets in remote parts of Scotland for self-isolation, as this can add extra pressure to local health services.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she did not want to comment on the specific case of the Prince, but added: “We want people to behave responsibly, we don’t want people to see the Highlands and islands of our country as places where they can outrun the virus.

“Obviously there are places where people have homes in Scotland and people will choose to go to their homes, but we should all be responsible.”



BBC News

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