A new helpline set up by the Scottish government is now available for Scottish businesses to provide help and advice on what to do surrounding the Coronavirus outbreak.
Based in a call centre in Clydebank run by Scottish Enterprise, advisers will answer questions related to the virus and help the Scottish government to identify challenges facing businesses to build a better picture of how to help.
The creation of the helpline comes after the First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that Scotland was moving from the containment to delay phase to halt the spread of the virus and gatherings of 500 people or more are to be cancelled to help support emergency services.
During a meeting with representatives from Scotland’s business support organisations including the STUC, Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop stressed the importance of everyone following the latest COVID-19 advice.
“Scotland is well-prepared for a significant outbreak of coronavirus, but people have a vital role to play in helping us contain any outbreak by following the latest health and travel advice” she said.
“This situation presents a significant risk to global and domestic economic activity. That is why, today, we are launching a business helpline which will provide companies in Scotland with the support and guidance they need to respond appropriately.
“We continue to work closely with our partners to identify what further support businesses needs. For example, the Minister for Local Government and Planning and the Chief Planner wrote to all planning authorities this week encouraging them to relax their approach to the enforcement of planning restrictions on shop delivery times and opening hours.
“I also chaired a meeting with representatives from Scotland’s business support organisations including the STUC to hear their concerns and provide reassurance that the Scottish Government will do everything in our power to protect the workforce, businesses and our economy.”
Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer has advised that “people with mild symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 including continuing coughing, a fever or a temperature of above 37.8 should self-isolate for seven days”.
There was also advice for people who have been in contact with someone who is experiencing symptoms to only self-isolate if they begin to experience symptoms themselves.
- Q&A: Chris Neumann, CEO, Commonwealth Ventures
- Radiation Watchdog Deems 5G Safe for Customer Use
- Sir Tim Berners-Lee Says Online Abuse Silences Women
Hyslop continued: “I would also encourage everyone to refer to the new guidance on COVID-19 that includes workplace advice on reducing the spread of infection.
“Following the UK Government’s budget we also require urgent clarification on what funding Scotland will receive from the announcements made by the UK Government, at a time when prospects for the economy and public finances remain very uncertain as the short term impacts of COVID-19 unfold.”
The business helpline number is 0300 303 0660 and is now live. Lines will be open Monday to Friday, between 8.30am to 5.30pm. Callers should select option one to speak to the COVID-19 team.