British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has gone into isolation after coming into contact with someone infected with COVID-19, a Downing Street spokesperson said on Sunday evening.
The Downing Street spokesperson added that Johnson will continue to work from Downing Street, “including leading the government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic.”
Johnson said on Twitter on Monday morning that he is in good health and has no symptoms. In an accompanying video, he added that “the good news is that NHS Test and Tracing is working ever more efficiently. The bad news is that they pinged me.”
He emphasised that it “doesn’t matter” that he feels “great” and that he’s had the disease so is “bursting with antibodies”, he still needed to self-isolate.
“We’ve got to interrupt the spread of the disease and one of the ways we can do that now if by self-isolating for 14 days when you get contacted by NHS Test and Trace and I do it with a high heart, full of optimism and confidence,” the Prime Minister said.
“Don’t forget we not only have this technique for interrupting the transmission of COVID but we also now have two gigantic boxing gloves with which to wallop our foe into submission: mass lateral flow testing — rapid turn around testing of a kind that this country is leading the way, we’ve got tens of millions of these tests already — and, of course, the prospect of a vaccine which I hope we’ll be able to start distributing to those who really need it, perhaps even before Christmas,” he added.
Hi folks, I’ve been instructed by our NHS Test & Trace scheme to self-isolate for two weeks, after being in contact with someone with Covid-19.
— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) November 16, 2020
Johnson met with a small group of lawmakers for about half an hour on Thursday, including one who subsequently developed coronavirus symptoms and tested positive.
Officials said they will discuss with parliamentary authorities how Johnson can take part remotely in Parliament’s business.
The UK is Europe’s most severely-affected country with nearly 52,000 confirmed COVID-19 deaths and more than 1.3 million infections.