During the early stages of the pandemic, 1,300 elderly people across Scotland were sent from hospitals to care homes. Medical experts believe this policy spread coronavirus resulting in mass outbreaks in Scottish care homes.
Anas Sarwar, Labour’s Scottish leader, said the policy created the “biggest crisis” of the pandemic and was “unforgivable”.
SNP health minister Jeane Freeman admitted the policy had been a “mistake”.
Asked whether she agreed Ms Sturgeon replied: “With the benefit of hindsight, yes.”
She clarified her remarks on Twitter in response to a BBC News article.
The first minister wrote: “What I said is that with the benefit of knowledge we have now (but did not have then), it was a mistake.
“But too many people in care homes died and we must be candid about that.
“I hope the other UK governments will join me in committing to a full pubic inquiry starting later this year.”
Criticising the policy Mr Sarwar said: “We should never have been sending Covid-positive patients into care homes. That was unforgivable.”
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Another added: “But we knew back then from evidence from other countries that this was a highly infectious disease which the vulnerable and elderly were most at risk from.
“Don’t try and rewrite history to cover your actions.
“Your actions accelerated care home deaths.”
A third wrote: “Oh come on, don’t be absurd, we had that knowledge then.
“It doesn’t take advanced medical knowledge to know that sending people sick with a disease that is fatal to the elderly into a care home environment was going to cause thousands of deaths. Many people warned of it repeatedly.”
Scots go to the polls in May to elect the next Scottish parliament.
Ms Sturgeon is demanding another referendum on Scotland leaving the UK.
Scotland voted to remain part of Britain by 55 percent to 45 percent in 2014.
Senior SNP figures have suggested a referendum could be held even without UK Government consent.
However, Mr Ross has urged unionists to boycott any ‘wildcat’ referendum to deny its legitimacy.