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  • good afternoon.

  • Look into Downing Street for today's Corona virus press conference.

  • I'm joined by Chief Medical officer Chris Witty Chris.

  • It's going back and also by deputy chief scientific adviser Angela and before actually gives us an update from the data.

  • I like to update you on the steps that the government is taking Thio defeat The current of ours step by step action plan is aimed at slowing the spread of the virus so fewer people need hospital treatment at any one time that will protect the image.

  • S is ability to come at each point we've being following scientific and medical advice when we've been very deliberate in our actions taking the right measures at the right moment, we're taking unprecedented action to increase the N.

  • H s is capacity by dramatically expanding the numbers of bets, key staff and equipment on the front lawn to get people to care they need when they need it most.

  • That's also why we're instructing people to stay home so that we protect our chest and save lives.

  • I can report that through the government's ongoing monitoring testing program.

  • As of today, 208,837 people have been tested for the virus, 51,608 have tested positive.

  • The number of people admitted to hospital with Corona virus symptoms now stands at 17,911.

  • And those who contracted the virus 5373 sadly died.

  • Our thoughts, our deepest condolences, but with their loved ones at this very difficult time.

  • These figures are a powerful reminder.

  • But why?

  • We need everyone to follow the government's gardens.

  • We must stay to protect our neck chest and to save lives.

  • As you know.

  • Last night, the prime minister was admitted to hospital the test following advice from his doctor.

  • This was a precautionary step because he continues to have persistent creative.

  • Are symptoms 10 days off the first having tested positive for the virus.

  • I can tell you the PM have a comfortable night hospital and he's in good spirits.

  • He's still in hospital under observation.

  • He's being given regular updates on developments and he continues to lead the government.

  • I can reassure the British people that the government remains united in a single overriding priority, which is to defeat the current virus and see this nation through the challenge ahead.

  • In the last week of the prime minister's leadership, the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, Michael Go, has explained what we're doing to boost manufacturing capability here.

  • Home to meet the rising demand for ventilators and other equipment in the N.

  • H s business Secretary out, Sharma has bean setting out what the government is doing to support small businesses.

  • And yesterday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock gave an update on what we're doing to bolster capacity in the chest, including increasing the number of critical care bets.

  • Yes, you only supporting all of these operational priorities.

  • So we deployment diplomatic network right around the world to source of by ventilators on protective equipment so that we can reinforce the N H s front line here.

  • At the same time, we're working with all the governments on the airlines to bring home is many stranded British nationals as we possibly can, prioritizing on most vulnerable citizens on commercial flights.

  • We've helped over 200,000 UK nationals come from Spain, 15,000 from Egypt, 8000 from Indonesia.

  • We've also charter flights from seven different countries.

  • Bring how more than 2000 British nationals we've repatriated a further 1550 from cruise ships, including, most recently the Cold Princess on Zander.

  • And for those travelers who is still stuck abroad, we're doing everything we can to keep international airports open to keep commercial flights running at the charter flights when there's no other options.

  • Under the new entrants that I announced last week on which has now been agreed with 14 airlines, we've allocated £75 million to support, there's a vengeance.

  • We've already had flights back from countries including Peru Garner in Tunisia, and we're fixing further flights from India, South African Paul in the Philippines, which will fly later on this week.

  • So I want to assure people every all governor is doing everything it possibly can to defeat the Corona virus and rise to the challenges that it presents us at home and abroad.

  • Last night, Her Majesty the Queen reflected on the national spirit of unity, a result that we're seeing in our country as well as the collective effort we need to tackle the disease from our heroic doctors, nurses and care workers through to those manning the tills at supermarkets and follow sees those driving the Lorries on the bus.

  • Is there a worthy of our applause there?

  • A worthy of our admiration.

  • You know that both the Prime Minister and I would like to thank all the energy just off, but they're truly heroic.

  • Look, we urge the public to continue to fly the government's advice to stay, protect the HHS and save lights.

  • Well, that night are going to pass it for not fatal latest victim.

  • Thank you.

  • If I could start with a slide.

  • This is about the work that we have all been doing in order to stay home.

  • So what you see there is how much change has been in how we use transport on the Orange Line.

  • I think is the one that shows us across the whole country how national rail usage has fallen right down thio below 20% of what it waas during February.

  • And you could see with other ways of moving around there also much, much lower than you would normally expect at this time of year.

  • You can see that on the 23rd of March.

  • So two weeks ago today they really, really fell very dramatically.

  • The efforts all of us are making to stay at home and save lives are working.

  • They're all like that.

  • The next slide the grass in the number of cases in our hospitals is not as bad as it would have been if we had not made these efforts.

  • So is working.

  • But the question is, is it?

  • Is the virus spread slowing down enough to make hospital admissions state lies and then even for back at the next light, please.

  • So these are people being admitted to hospital with Corbett 19 across different, different regions off Great Britain on what you can see is that having risen very steadily up until around about first of April there now starting so more complicated behavior on starting, we hope to slow down.

  • But it really is too soon to see the effects of the big changes we all made to our lives from the 23rd March onwards.

  • Because remember, that's only two weeks ago on it takes several weeks after you become infected for you to be, but realize that you're well enough that you really need to be in hospital.

  • So we're all watching these numbers very, very carefully on were very much hoping that what's gonna happen next, they will at least stop rising.

  • Next line, please.

  • The final set of numbers to look at today is that global comparisons off is very sad.

  • That's from and this is most like data, so that these data that show at the the date of reporting off deaths and there that could take a very long time after someone's dive be rather variable.

  • How long that takes in different countries on we will expect even if the number of people being admitted to hospitals and I T units does start to ST Saturday.

  • Do expect this number to keep on rising because, of course, it takes time after people been admitted to hospital for them.

  • Either get better or very sadly, to die.

  • And then, of course, further takes time for those debts to be reported.

  • So I'll stop there.

  • That too, don't it?

  • And to thank you very much.

  • So we have to take questions Lorcan spent from the BBC and I very much for secretary.

  • I'm pressing on the prime minister.

  • If the prime minister is ill enough to need to be in hospital, how could be well enough to run the country at a time of national emergency.

  • It may be better if you step back briefly in the woods to recover.

  • If I could ask the medics on you say that the restrictions are working, but to order to tell the longtime effects that what would your view, what likely exit strategy from the restrictions.

  • That's well, first of all along the P M.

  • He was admitted to hospital for tests as a precaution.

  • Only on that was because some of the symptoms that he had when he first tested positive had persisted is a comfortable night in sentences.

  • He's in good spirits on being ready, updated, and he still remains in charge of the government.

  • And we're getting old with all of the very strands of work to make sure home and abroad, we can defeat the virus on pull the country through great advice and the challenges that undoubtedly we're facing you want to come to.

  • Our house has been very straightforward, that we need a good long time.

  • Siri's off data on on all of the stages of infection in order to be able to tell what the impact of the measures that came in on the 23rd march are gonna be It's too early to tell yet we need way need people Harry on following the instructions so that we can work out three weeks later.

  • What actually happens in hospitals?

  • Where is that?

  • Give you downsize you need is it you want to come back?

  • I just wonder there is increasing discussion of eye with the exit stress you should be I would be interested to hear Actually, Professor, what they might anticipate given will be uncertain again.

  • Our suggestion is being completely clear.

  • We need to know how well the current the current restrictions are working before we can say anything sensible about what the next stage might be.

  • The number one priority right now is to stop the spread on dhe.

  • Make sure that we can get past the peak.

  • And I think that's the overriding focus of the government right now.

  • On the other decisions could be considered in light of the evidence that we're taking from Angela and Chris and vehicles three b from Scott.

  • Thank you for my secretary.

  • One of your team, African Minister James Doc Burrage, today urged Prime Minister to rest up on that Others do the heavy lifted until he gets backed up.

  • You agree that the prime minister at this moment needs to rest?

  • No work on question, Thio professor with the first that Welcome back, It's nice to see you back entry.

  • The third week of locked Down.

  • The government said it would review the lock down at the end of this week.

  • Given we're now approaching the peak of the epidemic, will you be advised the ministers to keep these measures in place?

  • And can you give the British people a sense of whether this will continue for weeks or months?

  • Thank you along your question that appear.

  • Look, he's in charge, but you're right.

  • He'll continue to take the doctor's advice on a what to do.

  • Next on We have a team which in the way I describe is full throttle, making sure his directions and his instructions are being implemented and followed through whether it's the purchase of ventilators through to the diplomatic effort to read return, A UK nationals were stranded abroad, but as ever we were promised, it will take the medical box that he gets from his doctor, Chris, just to Adam.

  • I'm basically say exactly the same thing that Angela said earlier, which is the key thing is to get to the point where we are confident we have reached the peak on This is now beyond the beak, and at that point, I think it is possible to have a serious discussion about all the things we need to do that step by step, to move to the next phase off managing this.

  • But I think to start time, that discussion until we're confident that that's what we've got to.

  • Would I think be a mistake.

  • Robert Peston Marty Oh, sorry.

  • Did you want to come back?

  • Yeah, just a follow up.

  • If that's what you just to be clear, given that we are approaching the peak, it's the end of the week whereby the government review whether it's relax restrictions.

  • It seems to me you are, say, the lock down measures will continue beyond this end of this week.

  • But I think to be clear, we do not think we know for certain that the peak will be the end of this week.

  • This is the point that Angela was making.

  • I think you're too confident with that.

  • That would be too early to start calling the point where we could make a move to the next phase of this evidence.

  • The government's number one party's overriding property is to get past the peak.

  • We do that by stopping the spread, which is why those decisions in those considerations Beth, you write your effective will have to wait until we're beyond that point Robert passed in 90 days.

  • Uh, you know, no cover questions to scientific experts.

  • Best professor with you.

  • None of us could really know quite how much Burton is even ones in the peak of health to be prime minister.

  • Normal advice and somebody feed as ill as becoming prime minister is to rest and all that.

  • He's not superhuman that some would argue that he is taking too much of a risk in the extent t torture Still working as a doctor.

  • I wonder if you could comment on that.

  • Secondly, I completely understand why you all say me line a plan for lifting the restrictions until we know whether the current measures are working.

  • But equally the damaged from a promote economic locked down will be tremendous in the sense that I'm becoming simply, wait will be able to generate revenue taxes on service is on the rest.

  • So I do think British people would want to feel that the government is working on a workable strategy in particular.

  • Is it possible to it the lock down unless and until we have a programme of mass testing for the virus on Unless and until we have technological solutions tracing people who may have with the the body.

  • We'll let Chris comment on the technical aspects.

  • But first of all, just between the prime minister, both in terms of going in tow, some Thomas's yesterday was taking device of doctors.

  • So he's following the doctor's advice on in terms off His recovery in the days ahead will continue to do so on just to get on the exit strategy.

  • Let's be clear about this and I'll let Chris talk about talk to the technical points.

  • But the risk right now is if we take our focus off.

  • The strategy which is beginning to work, is that we won't get through the peak as fast as we need to just have it legitimate to ask the question.

  • But the government's overriding priority has got to be to keep up the work on a commitment that so many people have made to make sure that we maintain the social distancing.

  • We stopped the straight.

  • We protect the images as we come through.

  • Chris.

  • My advice to the prime minister was to take the medical advice of the accent on HS doctors who are advising him, and I'm sure he'll continue to do that.

  • The only bit of advice I gave him a addition to that was, as is what you reported.

  • I did advise him to get tested in the first place because I thought that was proven.

  • But after that, I didn't wish to model my role with him.

  • I'm not his medical practitioner.

  • I, his adviser wider.

  • It sees in terms of the points you make about, you know, there must be planning for next date.

  • Of course, the rays on dhe.