Nicola Sturgeon has revealed a full lockdown is not included in the new tiered coronavirus restrictions system.
The first minister outlined plans for the new five-tiered system which will come into effect on November 2.
The highest level will be four and will bring about restrictions that will be closer to a full lockdown.
Non-essential shops would be forced to close, although two households of up to six people would still be able to meet outdoors and outdoor sports activities will be permitted.
Ms Sturgeon revealed that schools will not be closed in any of the tiers.
Level four will only be used temporarily and will only be put in place if “absolutely necessary”, she stressed.
“None of the levels bring about a severe lockdown much like the first earlier this year,” Ms Sturgeon said.
“I hope it reinforces the point that we are not back at square one and your sacrifices in the past year have made a difference.
“Our objective is to keep schools open at all levels.”
Level zero will be the lowest tier of restrictions with most businesses being open and eight people from three households able to meet indoors, similar to the situation in August.
The indoor meetings will be reduced to six people from two households in level one and will be similar to restrictions that were in place in mid-September.
Ms Sturgeon said the aim was for most regions in the country to stay at this level.
Level two was described as being similar to those which are seen across Scotland at the moment outside the central belt, including limits on hospitality.
Ms Sturgeon said level three would see “tougher restrictions” like those now in place in Glasgow and Edinburgh, including the closure of pubs – although restaurants may be able to open in some circumstances.
The first minister would not be drawn on when decisions would be made about what region is at what level, but confirmed the framework will be debated on Tuesday at the Scottish Parliament.
It will be centred around local authority areas rather than health boards.
Levels will be reviewed on a weekly basis.
Ms Sturgeon explained why they had decided to go with the five-tiered approach.
She said: “This new framework will allow a national approach when required and at some points, all of the country could be placed in the same level.
“It will mean there will be no one size fits all approach in Scotland and makes the restrictions more flexible.
“Broadly speaking, level zero is the closest to normality we can get to without a vaccine or treatment for the virus.
“The framework is published with an open mind and we will listen to consultations during the week and I am convening a leaders meeting this afternoon.”
The publication also gives advice to those who shielded during the full lockdown.
World War Two comparison
Ms Sturgeon compared the current situation to World War Two and made three points to help keep the country’s morale up.
She said: “Don’t forget we are not powerless against the virus.
“We need to look out for each other, be kind, and show love empathy, and solidarity.
“Never forget that we will get through this despite it feeling never-ending.
“Humanity has gone through worse, some of the people out there survived the horrors of World War Two which was six long brutal years where you didn’t know where loved ones were or if they were dead or alive.
“We will get through it, we will look back on this eventually in past tense so let’s help each other through it as best we can.”
- 1,401 new cases in Scotland with 20.6% of those newly tested testing positive.
- Of these new cases, 493 are in the Glasgow area.
- 975 people are now in hospital, up by 41, with the number in ICU now 76.
- 18 more people have died.
Ms Sturgeon revealed that 94 deaths have been confirmed in the last week, with the number of people in hospital increasing more than 60%.
“Unfortunately, given that cases have risen sharply over much of the last month these numbers of hospital admissions and ICU admission – and, unfortunately, the rising number of deaths – are likely to continue to rise for some time yet.
“However when we look at most recent data for new cases, we do think we can see some signs of progress as a result of the sacrifices people are making.”
Looking back two weeks ago, to October 9, the first minister said new cases per day increased 907, a 52% increase from the previous.
Last week, the average cases per day increased to 1,171 – that was up by 29%.
Today, the average number of cases in the past week has been 1,255 – which is up by 7% from the week before.
Ms Sturgeon said although cases are still rising, the rate appears to be slowing down which “gives us grounds for optimism, although still quite cautious optimism”.