Ending Lockdown

Primary Author or Creator:
Craig Dalzell
Additional Author(s) / Creators
Common Weal
Common Weal
Date Published:
Type of Resource:
Policy Paper
Fast Facts

This paper models the cost of a comprehensive testing-based strategy to limit the spread of Covid-19 in Scotland and to allow the country to emerge safely from its blanket lockdown.

More details

― Scotland is not proactively testing or contact tracing enough people to determine where potential Covid outbreaks are likely to take place. At the time of writing, Germany was testing four people for every one person tested in Scotland. Hong Kong was testing more than 20 people for every one in Scotland.

― The result has been that the virus has spread out of control throughout the country leading to a blanket, national lockdown.

― Extended lockdowns are economically damaging. A three month Lockdown is estimated to cost Scotland around £11 billion in lost economic activity.

― A model has been adapted to show what it would take to be able to deliver one proactive test to detect an active Covid infection and one antibody test to detect previous infection to every person in Scotland at least once per month.

― This high-intensity testing programme would be backed by a network of community-based wellbeing officers who could help with contact tracing chains of infection as well as ensuring that those who have been quarantined are well supported.

― The total cost of this programme is estimated at between £1.0 and £1.5 billion to run for a year. The combined economic cost of a three month lockdown plus the social cost of lives lost, shortened or harmed by the pandemic is estimated at around £15 billion.