Coronavirus cases in the UK jump past 100

Will Taylor
News Reporter
A man at a bust stop in Whitehall, London, wearing a protective facemask on the day that Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus in the UK has risen to 51.

The number of cases in the UK has gone past 100, officials have confirmed this afternoon.

The government’s update means the country’s cases have leapt from 85 announced at 2.15pm yesterday to 115.

It follows Prof Whitty’s warning earlier that deaths in the UK from the virus could reach a “large absolute number”.

Speaking to the Commons’ Health and Social Care Committee, he said: “For those people who get the disease severe enough to need hospital but not severe enough, fortunately, to kill them, they will still need NHS and health care.”

He added that the government has now moved in to the “delay phase” of tackling the virus, mostly moving on from attempts to contain.

This is aimed at moving back the virus’ peak from the winter pressures that face the NHS, as well as allowing for time to research the virus.

Nobody has died in the UK from coronavirus but a British man who had been aboard the cruise ship the Diamond Princess died from the illness last week.

Professor Chris Whitty spoke to MPs about coronavirus. (PA Images)

Meanwhile, Commons leader Jacob Rees-Mogg told MPs there is no medical reason to shut down parliament.

He responded to reports that lawmakers could be locked out of the Palace of Westminster for five months to stop the virus spreading.

Meanwhile, the man thought to be the first British person to be infected with coronavirus said it hit him “like a train”.

Writing in a diary-style piece for the Mail, Conor Reed, a manager at a school in Wuhan, China, the epicentre of the virus, records that he has “never been this ill in my life” and felt he was suffocating, which prompted him to visit hospital.