SEVEN lives were lost to the coronavirus in West Dunbartonshire during the festive period, according to the latest statistics.

National Records of Scotland (NRS) figures showed there were two deaths recorded in the week beginning December 21 and four in the week starting December 28. The fatalities are where death certificates refer to Covid-19.

NRS said registrations were lower over the festive period because of the public holidays.

A total of 178 people have died in West Dunbartonshire since the pandemic began more than nine months ago, 14th highest local authority in Scotland. Neighbouring Glasgow has lost 1,108 lives to the virus.

Across Scotland, 6,686 people have died in Scotland with confirmed or suspected coronavirus.

This is a rise of 383 between December 21 and January 3.

In the week to January 3 the majority of deaths - 111 - were in hospitals, with 63 in care homes and nine at home or in a non-institutional setting. The figures are no long divided by local authority as during the first wave when about half of West Dunbartonshire deaths were in care homes.

The statistics differ from the lab-confirmed coronavirus deaths announced daily by the Scottish Government because the NRS figures include suspected or probable cases of Covid-19.

The death toll, in terms of people who first tested positive for the virus within the previous 28 days, is now 4,779.

A total of 143,715 people have tested positive in Scotland since the start of the pandemic.

There are 1,467 people in hospital confirmed to have Covid-19, up 83 from 1,384 in 24 hours.

Of these patients, 100 are in intensive care.

A total of 113,459 people in Scotland have received their first vaccination as of Sunday, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

The Scottish Government is also half way through vaccinating residents in care homes, the First Minister said.

"That is extremely important, as you have just heard, more than a third of people who died from Covid last week died in our care homes," she said.

"We very much hope that the vaccine will very soon start to significantly reduce the risk of care home residents becoming ill with the virus."