A SHARP rise in COVID-19 cases across Fife has led to a fresh warning from health chiefs.

NHS Fife say there has been a rapid increase in the number of coronavirus clusters across the Kingdom over recent weeks including those associated with educational settings, workplaces and individual households.

In a bid to cut COVID-19 cases locally, it has launched a new ‘Stick With It’ campaign urging the public to follow the national control measures in place to reduce the numbers of those contracting the virus.

Director of public health Dona Milne said: “COVID-19 can potentially be deadly and over recent weeks we have seen a particularly sharp and significant increase in the number of positive cases locally.

“There is clear evidence that both gatherings involving multiple households and the sharing of vehicles have accelerated the spread of the virus in Fife. This has resulted in many more people contracting COVID-19, and a small number of people requiring admission to hospital as a result.

"Furthermore, an even greater number of close contacts have been required to self-isolate for 14 days to assist the efforts to contain the virus, causing considerable disruption to households across Fife and preventing many people from being able to attend school or work.”

Self-isolating remains a vital part of reducing the transmission of COVID-19. Those asked to isolate must stay at home for a full 14 days after contact with a positive case, however, other household members do not need to isolate unless they too are identified as a contact.

In cases involving school pupils, only those children identified as a contact of a positive case need to isolate and any other siblings should continue to attend school as normal.

Anyone experiencing the known symptoms of COVID-19, such as a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste should isolate immediately and arrange to be tested using the UK Government Citizens’ Portal or by calling 0800 028 2816.

Ms Milne added: “COVID-19 is often spread by those with little or no symptoms at all.

“If we are to protect the most vulnerable in our communities and avoid further restrictions like we have seen in other parts of Scotland, then we must continue to take the virus seriously.

"We need people to stick with the rules around gatherings, avoid sharing vehicles with those outwith our own households, avoid crowded places where possible and wear face-coverings where physical-distancing is difficult.”