THERE might have been a rise in East Lothian’s coronavirus figures today (Thursday) but they remain the sixth lowest Scotland and the county is one of only seven local authorities in Scotland with a seven-day rate per 100,000 of the population of below 200.

The most recent data from Public Health Scotland shows that between December 29 and January 4, 161 cases were recorded in East Lothian and the seven-day rate per 100,000 of the population was sitting at 150.3.

This is slightly higher than the 155 cases and seven-day rate of 144.7 reported yesterday (Wednesday).

However, they remain the lowest in the Lothian healthboard area.

By comparison, Edinburgh’s seven-day positive rate is sitting at 237.2, Midlothian’s at 209.8 and West Lothian’s at 179.1.

In East Lothian, five places are now listed as areas of concern, all with seven-day positive rates between 200 and 399. They are: Musselburgh West (six cases), Musselburgh North (11 cases), Musselburgh East (14 cases), Tranent North (16 cases) and Ormiston (six cases).

Just yesterday, Musselburgh West was at the other end of the scale, as it had recorded fewer than two cases; however, its case rate is now among the highest in the county.

The places with a seven-day rate between 100 and 199 have changed but their number remains at 13: Musselburgh South (five cases), Wallyford/Whitecraig (12 cases), Pinkie Braes (three cases), Prestonpans West (seven cases), Prestonpans East (five cases), Tranent South (11 cases), Cockenzie (11 cases), Longniddry and Aberlady (eight cases), Haddington North (seven cases), Haddington South (five cases), North Berwick South (six cases), East Linton and Rural (eight cases) and Dunbar West (six cases).

At the other end of the scale, only Gullane and Drem recorded fewer than two cases in the seven days up to January 4. The rest of East Lothian recorded a seven-day rate between 50 and 99.

Across Scotland as a whole, 2,649 new positive cases were recorded – 357 were in the Lothian healthboard area – as were 78 deaths among those who had previously tested positive.

The number of people in hospital increased by 83 to 1,467, with the number of people in intensive care (ICU) increasing by five to 100.

Earlier this afternoon, National Records of Scotland published its recent statistics and figures for those whose death included coronavirus.

There were fewer registrations than normal due to public holidays so numbers are likely to be lower than the actual number of deaths that occurred in these weeks.

As of January 3, there were 6,686 deaths registered in Scotland where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate; 183 of these were registered between December 28 and January 3, which is fewer than the 200 registered the week before.

Out of the 183 deaths registered in the seven days up to January 3, 32 were in the Lothian healthboard area, 24 of these were in the Edinburgh council area.