LiveCoronavirus in UK live blog: latest as experts warn of 'several more weeks' of lockdown

Coronavirus in UK live blog: latest as UK record record death toll of 980 and Matt Hancock holds daily press briefing

Friday, 10th April 2020, 5:30 pm

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Coronavirus live blog; 10 April

Last updated: Friday, 10 April, 2020, 18:06

Hancock and May underline the importance of contacting emergency services if you are suffering from an emergency unrelated to Covid-19.

That concludes today's daily press briefing and today's live blog. 

We will back at 8am next Monday. 

The Health Secretary is being questioned on social distancing within the government after claims that he had been holding meetings in his own office with 10/20 people. 

Matt Hancock says he works from home when he can and says that he follow social distancing rules when he comes into work.

Matt Hancock says the spare bed capacity is increasing.

Government "on track" to meet 100,000 a day target

On the 100,000 tests a day target Hancock says that since he announced this the government have had a huge number of offers to turn facilities into test-manufacturing facilities. 

He says mega-labs will be manned by volunteers super-specialised in creating tests. 

He says the government are working 24/7 to make the 100,000 a day target but that "we are on track". 

Ruth May says its personally frustrating for an NHS worker when people don't onserve social distancing.  

She says there are still examples of her own staff being abused by neighbours for driving to work. 

On the number of indirect deaths that could be caused by the conomic impact of Covid-19 Matt Hancock says this is something that worries him. 

He says thus far there is no point where the NHS has been overrun which is a top priority. 

He says we don't yet have an established piece of work that can estimate how a struggling economy will impacts the health and wellbeing of the nation. He says it's too early to make these decisions. He says he and Rishi Sunak are working on this. 

He says a "government" figure circulated in the Telegraph that said 150,000 could die due to the indirect impact of the pandemic was false.

Ruth May confirms that a number of NHS staff have died from Covid-19 but it wouldn't be appropriate for her to reveal the figures now without the permission of families. 

Low levels of transmission beyond the peak for'a long time'

Matt Hancock says we follow the science when making decisions on both international travel and the use of face masks. 

He again says "we follow the science" on the use of face masks because they don't have " a material impact". 

He then says face mask should be saved for those "who really need them". 

On international transport Van Tam says closing borders would not work in stopping the spread of Covid-19. 

He says we will likely go to low levels of transmission of Covid-19 for "a long time".

On face masks he says its an emotive issue that is constantly under scientific review.Experts remain convinced that there's no evidence to use general mask use by the public.

Asked whether the PM will return to work soon Hancock is vague and says he is "recovering".

The trio are now taking questions. 

On PPE delivery says it takes constant effort because the use of PPE has gone from something that "happens in a small way" to "right across the board". 

He says the team that are trying to deliver on this have put in an enormous effort. 

Huge tasked ahead to "keep it flowing" to ensure staff receive the equipment.

Ruth May adds that PPE is important in people being protected and also feeling like they're protected. 

She says it's "tough wearing PPE" and wants to recognise that.

Professor Jonathan Van Tam is speaking now. 

Transport use is staying at low levels according to the deputy CMO.

On the new number of cases he says that we are at a high level and the numbers are varying day by day. He reinforces this is not over. 

He says that the number of people occupying hospital beds is slowing and that the public's hard work is paying off.

He says its premature to say we're at a peak. 

Sunderland and Exeter to be site of new hospitals

Ruth May reveals that Sunderland and Exeter will soon be the site of new hospitals

Ruth May is speaking now. 

She offers her thanks to all NHS and care staff for what htey're doing "round the clock". 

She also thanks key workers, saying "you are helping me stay at work."

The Health Secretary finishes by saying there is something we can all do to help the national effort: "stay at home". 

He says the more we all follow the rules the faster we get "back to normal life."

He says over the next week every hospital will receive a delivery of PPE every day.

He says over the next three weeks the government are launching an online portal where hopsitals can request PPE.

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