Prime Minister Boris Johnson is “improving” after two nights in intensive care with coronavirus, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has said.
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Mr Johnson was now sitting up in bed and “engaging positively” with the clinical team at St Thomas’ Hospital in London, the chancellor added.
Mr Sunak also said a Cobra meeting on Thursday would discuss “the approach” to take in reviewing lockdown measures.
It comes as a record 938 daily deaths were reported in United Kingdom (UK) hospitals.
The total number of UK deaths now stands at 7,097, according to the latest Department of Health figures.
The PM was taken to St Thomas’ Hospital in London on Sunday – 10 days after testing positive for the virus – and was then moved to intensive care on Monday.
At the daily coronavirus briefing in Downing Street, Mr Sunak said Mr Johnson was “receiving excellent care from the NHS team at St Thomas.”
“The prime minister is not only my colleague and my boss but also my friend and my thoughts are with him and his family,” he said.
Later, Downing Street said the prime minister “continues to make steady progress” but remained in intensive care.
Though the daily rise in deaths was larger than the previous highest toll of 786 – on Tuesday – the deputy chief scientific adviser, Prof Dame Angela McLean, said new cases were not “accelerating out of control”.
But NHS England medical director Stephen Powis warned now was not the time to become “complacent”.
He said: “We are beginning to see the benefits, I believe (of the government’s lockdown measures), but the really critical thing, I believe, is that we have to continue following instructions, we have to continue following social distancing, because if we don’t, the virus will start to spread again.”