Amid the darkness of the coronavirus crisis, there are occasional moments of light.

One such moment comes at 8pm on Thursdays when people in communities across the UK come together to applaud our dedicated NHS workers.

It has been an emotional outpouring of support for those on the frontline who are fighting to save lives.

I hope, when this crisis is over, that Britain’s community spirit endures.

That we all value the NHS more; that we all look out for each other more; and that we all remember the importance of kindness.

In the meantime, we must ensure NHS workers receive all the support they need and deserve as they tackle this national emergency.

With coronavirus cases continuing to rise, the pressure on Scotland’s hospitals is intense.

By last week, more than a third of the beds that the NHS managed to free up were already occupied. Operating theatres are being repurposed and the SECC in Glasgow is set to become a temporary hospital thanks to our Armed Forces.

As so often, our health workers are going above and beyond.

And that makes it even more concerning that there has been a disturbing shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) for those on the frontline.

Without this gear, NHS staff are at risk of catching the virus themselves and being forced to stay away from work for days – piling pressure on an already-stretched service.

They could even end up seriously ill in hospital beds themselves, rather than caring for others.

Doctors and nurses have said they increasingly feel they have to choose between their jobs and their safety.

Workers, trade unions and professional associations all continue to voice serious concerns about the availability and quality of PPE they are receiving to the Scottish Government.

It is vital that our frontline health and social care workers have adequate supplies of the right PPE to see them and us through this pandemic.

In this national emergency, everyone needs the government to succeed – and the job of opposition parties is to provide constructive oversight of the decisions being taken on behalf of everyone in Scotland.

That’s precisely what Scottish Labour has been doing to ensure the shortage of PPE is addressed as a national priority.

Another issue which must be a national priority is the testing of key workers.

Staff again have raised real anxieties about a lack of testing in the health and social care sector, so that those on the frontline can remain at their posts throughout this unprecedented crisis.

International experience shows that comprehensive testing has been critical to successfully limiting the spread of this virus.

The advice from the World Health Organization was simple: “Test, test, test.”

We have clearly been lagging behind other countries, and we must redouble efforts to protect those who are working so hard to protect us all.

They deserve not only our thanks; they deserve the full support of government and for the government to deliver the levels of testing and PPE they have promised frontline staff.

This is an uncertain and anxious time for everyone.

But we will get through this by coming together and standing by our dedicated NHS workers.