The Catch-up: Biggest increase in UK coronavirus cases in a single day

An Emergency Department Nurse during a demonstration of the Coronavirus pod and COVID-19 virus testing procedures set-up beside the Emergency Department of Antrim Area Hospital, Co Antrim in Northern Ireland. PA Photo. Picture date: Wednesday March 4, 2020. See PA story HEALTH Coronavirus Ulster. Photo credit should read: Michael Cooper/PA Wire

What happened?

The UK has seen its biggest increase in coronavirus cases in a single day. 87 people have now tested positive after 34 new cases were confirmed on Wednesday. Three of the new cases were passed on within the UK, raising fears that community transmission may now be taking hold. England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, warned that a UK epidemic is looking “likely”.

Will I get paid if I'm off work with coronavirus?

Boris Johnson announced new sick pay changes on Wednesday as part of emergency coronavirus legislation, meaning anyone self-isolating is paid from day one rather than day four as current rules state. However it is not clear what will happen to workers in the gig economy who are not entitled to statutory sick pay. The PM said: “Nobody should be penalised for doing the right thing. 

How ready is the UK?

Prof Whitty said the NHS could "cope" with widespread coronavirus. He said if the UK sees a very large epidemic, “then it will put very high pressure on the NHS”, and there could be “several weeks which could be very difficult” for the health service and wider society. The government has emergency measures in palce for a worst-case scenario, including closing schools and cancelling mass public events.

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Coronavirus: Number of cases jumps by 34 in one day to 85 (Yahoo News UK)

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