IN relation to testing for Covid-19 virus, on March 15, in a news update, the Scottish Government stated: “Key workers such as NHS staff will continue to be tested if they show symptoms.” You reported this on the same day online, though not in my newsprint edition on the following morning.

On Saturday morning (March 21), my older daughter, a staff nurse in an emergency medical receiving unit, actively engaged in the very forefront of the “war” against this highly contagious disease, woke with a sore throat, a cough and a high temperature. She was supposed to be working and so phoned the hospital to let them know the situation.

When my younger daughter told me that her sister had phoned to tell her about this, I, of course, knowing of this news update, presumed that she would have been given some advice and told that she would be contacted later in the morning to let her know when someone would be out to administer the test. After all, the Scottish Government assured us that would happen because we can’t have experienced nursing staff lounging about at home longer than they should be if they only have a heavy cold, can we?

My wife, who retired as a staff nurse just over two years ago (I daren’t mention after 50 years’ service to the NHS) in the past few days has received emails from the General Nursing and Midwifery Council asking her to volunteer to return to work for the duration. Her instincts were, naturally, to join the several thousand who have happily agreed to do so. But that is impossible. She underwent very serious surgery last year on holiday and simply is not fit enough to return to the wards.

In a day or two’s time my daughter might be. But as it stands, she won’t know and so her colleagues, and their patients, will just have to struggle on without her for a minimum of seven days. Lanarkshire Health Board have – and I deliberately use the plural as the individuals with management responsibilities have to my mind in the present circumstances no right whatsoever to hide behind the “corporate sole” – apparently put in place no system to deal with this sort of thing.

Nurses catching the disease they are treating their patients for? Don’t be silly. Who ever heard of that? Pandemic? What pandemic? Or maybe management just don’t work at weekends.

Hugh McLoughlin, Bellshill.

YESTERDAY (Mother's Day) I spoke to my elder son, daughter-in-law and grandchildren via FaceTime. He said that earlier in the day he had gone to the local supermarket. Outside the store red lines, a meter apart, were painted on the ground and customers instructed to stay two meters apart. On approaching the entrance a man sprayed his hands with antibacterial gel, and a few steps further on another man took his temperature before allowing access to the store. Inside, once shopping completed, there was one queueing area, again with the spaced red lines on the floor.

In which part of our country was this, do I hear you ask? This was in Brunei, where he has lived for almost two years. He was due to return to the UK with his family later this week. That will not now happen. I can’t help but feel they will all be safer in Brunei. Are we doing enough here in the UK?

Christine R McLachlan, Milton of Campsie.