A stark reminder

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Just when businesses on Arran thought things couldn’t get any tougher, they have been hit by new rules.

We have no doubt the First Minister and her government have good reason to impose tighter restrictions around takeaway services and, given the way they operate on the island, we are sure most will be able to continue.

But non-essential click and collect services now being forced to stop will be a body blow to firms which have spent time and money adapting to the new way of working, only to have the ‘lifeline’ taken away from them.

However, anyone who does not think more restrictions are needed only needs to take a look across the water at what is happening within NHS Ayrshire and Arran on the mainland.

Reports that NHS Ayrshire and Arran’s Covid-19 capacity is under severe pressure are concerning and the Scottish Government must ensure the health board is fully resourced to cope with the mounting challenges it is facing.

This serves as a stark reminder of the need for us all to keep following government guidance and do all we can to reduce the spread of Covid.

But it will be concerning for many older residents that elective surgery they may have been waiting for has now been postponed across acute hospitals in NHS Ayrshire and Arran, and it is to be hoped this is able to resume when the worst of the second wave of coronavirus is curtailed.

There was some good news for businesses this week with the announcement of the new grant support scheme and we hope it will help many, but it looks like being many months before they are out of the woods.