People across Scotland should decide for themselves whether it is safe or not to meet relatives at Christmas even if governments allow it, a public health expert has said.

With infection levels high across the UK, Professor Linda Bauld said that meeting indoors offers an opportunity for Covid-19 to spread and people could be particularly concerned for older relatives.

It comes amid widespread confusion over Christmas plans after the Westminster Government said on Sunday that leaders across the UK had endorsed an objective of “some limited additional household bubbling” over the Christmas period for a small number of days.

But the Scottish Government said "no agreement has been reached".

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Professor Bauld told BBC Good Morning Scotland: “Many of us would wish to see our older relatives at Christmas, and we know that mortality from Covid-19 is significantly higher for older people – I think around 86% of deaths in hospital occurred in people over the age of 65 – so this is concerning.

“At the moment we still have levels of infection in the community across the UK that are higher than we would wish.

“If we come together with people from different households at the time of year when the windows are closed, the people you care about, physical distancing is difficult, it is an opportunity for the virus to spread, so this is really really tough.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is to set out the basis of plans for the festive period on Monday.

Prof Bauld said that, in planning whether people can meet over the festive period, governments may also be concerned about mental health, with levels of depression and anxiety significantly higher than expected for the time of year due to the pandemic.

“This discussion is about trying to recognise that there are not only harms from the virus, there are other harms, people want to see their loved ones,” she said.

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She added that, even if restrictions are eased, people should make their own decisions about what they feel comfortable doing.

“It is up to us to decide, even if government says ‘OK, you can get together indoors with other people’, let’s all make our own risk assessment about the people we care about and ourselves and say how are we going to apply that to our own personal circumstances.

“So I think, as with everything throughout this pandemic, it has got to be a partnership between guidance and support that government gives and what people decide to do for themselves and for their families.”