Coronavirus figures and thanks to key workers
Our step-by-step action plan is aiming to slow the spread of the virus, so fewer people need hospital treatment at any one time, thereby protecting the NHS’ capacity. At each point, we have been following the scientific and medical advice and we’ve been very deliberate in our actions – taking the right steps at the right moment.
We are also taking unprecedented action to increase NHS capacity by dramatically expanding the numbers of beds, key staff, life-saving equipment on the frontline so that we give people the care they need when they need it most.
That’s why we are instructing people to stay at home, so we can protect our NHS and save lives.
I can report that through the government’s ongoing monitoring and testing programme, as of today:
- 134,946 people have now been tested for the virus
- 112,805 have tested negative
- 22,141 have tested positive
Of those who have contracted the virus, 1,408 have, very sadly, died. We express our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those who have passed away and I think those figures are a powerful reminder to us all of the importance of following the government’s guidelines.
We must stay at home to protect our NHS and save lives.
I would like to thank all those involved on the frontline and in particular all of those in the NHS for their battle against the virus, the amazing doctors, the amazing nurses and all the support staff working day and night.
The thousands of other key workers – from our teachers to supermarket workers to our fantastic diplomatic network – who are all as a team working around the clock to get us through this unprecedented coronavirus challenge.
Getting foreign travellers home
on 17 March, we advised people against all non-essential travel around the world.
And since 23 March, we have advised that all UK residents who were currently travelling abroad should return home. Hundreds of thousands have already done so.
But many travellers haven’t yet managed to get home. From young back-packers to retired couples on cruises. We appreciate the difficult predicament that they find themselves in.
We also recognise the anxiety of families here in the UK, who are concerned to get their loved ones home. It is a worrying time for all those who have been affected.
And I want to reassure them that this government, their government is working around the clock to support, advise and help British travellers get home.
New Police powers
The government has bought in a new health protection bill which contains new powers for the police to help manage the spread of the coronavirus.
These powers give all police officers the power to direct infected people to go and immediately receive treatment or self-isolate at home. They will also support officers in dealing with those who are not complying with the social-distancing restrictions. The government has been clear that it expects people to do the right thing in order to protect the NHS and save lives.
This applies to the Civil Nuclear Constabulary (CNC) officers who work protecting nuclear sites across the country and the government has made it clear that compliance with these regulations is an absolute priority for the nation.
The police force as a whole polices by consent and will continue to do so throughout this time of unprecedented national emergency. In the first instance, CNC officers will be engaging, explaining and encouraging members of the public to follow the restrictions. This will include asking whether an individual is aware of the government request; establish individual circumstances and how quickly someone can comply. Officers will also explain the risks to public health, and to the NHS in line with government guidance and encourage voluntary compliance.
Our officers will continue to carry out their nationally vital core Mission in keeping our civil nuclear sites safe and secure while ensuring the communities around the sites that we police are protected.