British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been admitted to a hospital after showing “persistent symptoms” of the coronavirus, according to an official spokesperson.
A statement from 10 Downing Street says that Johnson will undergo further tests as a “precautionary step” after first testing positive for the virus 10 days ago.
“On the advice of his doctor, the Prime Minister has tonight been admitted to hospital for tests,” the spokesperson wrote in a statement. “This is a precautionary step, as the Prime Minister continues to have persistent symptoms of coronavirus ten days after testing positive for the virus.
“The Prime Minister thanks NHS staff for all of their incredible hard work and urges the public to follow the Government’s advice to stay home, protect the NHS and save lives.”
Statement from Downing Street on Boris Johnson being admitted to hospital: pic.twitter.com/axrl1LnAzR
— Daniel Hewitt (@DanielHewittITV) April 5, 2020
Johnson’s hospitalization comes just an hour after Queen Elizabeth II made a rare televised appearance to address the ongoing pandemic, asking the British public to show “self-discipline and resolve” in the face of the crisis.
“I hope in the years to come everyone will be able to take pride in how they responded to this challenge,” she said. “And those who come after us will say that the Britons of this generation were as strong as any. That the attributes of self-discipline, of quiet good-humored resolve and of fellow-feeling still characterize this country.”
Johnson tested positive for the coronavirus on March 27, four days after issuing a nationwide lockdown in an effort to contain the virus. The prime minister had planned to avoid any lockdown policy to address the spreading virus in the hopes that the public would develop a “herd immunity” to the virus. However, he reversed course after a report from Imperial College London warned that not implementing social distancing precautions could lead to the deaths of millions of people.
To date, 4,800 deaths connected to COVID-19 have been reported in Great Britain with 48,000 confirmed cases. Worldwide, over 69,000 deaths have been reported with over 1.25 million confirmed cases.