United Kingdom's Health Department has stated that the number of people infected with the virus has increased to 14,543 with the death toll rising to 759 on Friday. The update comes on the day when the country's Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced that they had tested positive for coronavirus.
UPDATE on coronavirus (#COVID19) testing in the UK:— Department of Health and Social Care (@DHSCgovuk) March 27, 2020
As of 9am 27 March, a total of 113,777 have been tested:
As of 5pm on 26 March, of those hospitalised in the UK, 759 have sadly died. pic.twitter.com/MBuOB994N4
A statement read, "Across the UK, there have been 113,777 concluded tests of which 99,198 were confirmed negative, and 14,579 positive. 759 of these hospitalized in the UK (COVID-19) have sadly died."
The government also announced that they will be increasing testing in order to identify more cases and trace the history of the patients. Michael Gove, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster said, "Increasing our testing capacity is absolutely crucial in our response to and our fight against coronavirus. This is a particular priority for those who work in the health and social care sector and are working so hard to keep us all safe. This will be antigen testing, testing whether people currently have the disease. So there are health and social care workers can have security in the knowledge that they are safe to return to work if the test is negative. These tests will be trialed for people on the front line starting immediately with hundreds take place by the end of the weekend, dramatically scaling up next week."
Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England, said, "I can say that today we're announcing that we will be rolling out staff testing across the NHS beginning next week, starting with the critical care nurses, other staff in intensive care, emergency departments, ambulance services, GPs. And as the testing volumes continue to increase, we want to expand that to a wider range of essential public service workers, including our social care services, as well as, of course, continuing with the patient testing, which is so vital."
On March 25, Prince Charles, the heir to the British throne tested positive for COVID-19. As per a spokesperson, Prince Charles was displaying mild symptoms but remained in good health. At the same, the Duchess of Cornwall is also self-isolating despite not have having the virus.