UK Prime Minister and Health Secretary test positive for coronavirus

UK Prime Minister and Health Secretary test positive for coronavirus

In a video, Johnson said he had a temperature and a persistent cough.

The government confirmed earlier this week that if Mr Johnson became incapacitated, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab would step in.

He is self-isolating in Downing Street but said he will "continue to lead the government's response via video-conference as we fight this virus".

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday described British premier Boris Johnson as a "fighter" and hoped he recovers from coronavirus infection.

A Downing Street spokeswoman said: "After experiencing mild symptoms yesterday, the Prime Minister was tested for coronavirus on the personal advice of England's Chief Medical Officer, Professor Chris Whitty".

Following Mr Johnson's announcement, Health Secretary Matt Hancock also said he had tested positive for the virus.

"Be in no doubt that I can continue thanks to the wizardry of modern technology to communicate with all my top team to lead the national fightback against coronavirus", he added in the video message.

Johnson was in Parliament as recently as Wednesday, where he carried out an extended Prime Minister's Question Time.

Cases of the novel coronavirus have been steadily rising in the country, with 11,816 cases confirmed so far and 578 deaths attributed to the virus, according to the latest data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

Media captionIn a video on Twitter, Boris Johnson says he is self-isolating and will continue to work from home.

The UK has been in lockdown for nearly two weeks as ministers and health officials brace the country for a peak in the coronavirus outbreak, and seek to avoid the National health Service being overburdened with cases.

Britain initially took a strikingly modest approach to the worst health crisis since the 1918 influenza epidemic but then changed tack to impose stringent controls after projections showed a quarter of a million British people could die.

Today, the U.S. overtook China for the highest amount of confirmed coronavirus cases.

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