Downing Street: Boris Johnson Stable, Responding to Coronavirus Treatment

MIDDLESBROUGH, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 20: Prime Minister Boris Johnson wears a construction helmet with "Prime Minister" written on it, during a visit to Wilton Engineering Services as part of a General Election campaign trail stop on November 20, 2019 in Middlesbrough, England. (Photo by Frank Augstein - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Frank Augstein - WPA Pool/Getty Images

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is in a stable condition in intensive care and responding to treatment, his spokesman has said, in positive news that follows days of apparently worsening infection with coronavirus.

In a closed briefing with Westminster lobby journalists Wednesday, a spokesman for Boris Johnson said he was “clinically stable and responding to treatment”, still in intensive care and on an oxygen supply, but in good spirits. The statement suggests a recovery for Mr Johnson may be on the horizon.

If the pattern of information follows previous days where the Prime Minister has been in hospital, a further and more detailed statement will be made at the daily press conference from Downing Street Wednesday afternoon at 1700. In recent days, that conference has been taken by Dominic Raab, the Prime Minister’s stand-in deputy while he is incapacitated.

In Tuesday’s update, Mr Raab expressed his faith in the Prime Minister’s returning to health, calling him a “fighter”. He said then: “…he remained stable overnight, he’s receiving standard oxygen treatment and breathing without any assistance. He’s not required any mechanical ventilation or non-invasive respiratory support.

“He remains in good spirits, and in keeping with usual clinical practice, his progress continues to be monitored closely in clinical care… The prime minister asked me to deputies for him while he recovers and in line with the Prime Ministers instructions I carried the meeting of senior ministers tackling coronavirus…  I’m confident he’ll pull through because if there’s anything I know about this Prime Minister, it’s that he’s a fighter and he’ll be back at the helm leading us through this crisis in short order.”

Mr Johnson was originally admitted to hospital on Sunday evening, a statement from his official residence and personal office at 10 Downing Street claiming this was on the advice of his doctors and one for tests to take place. Yet within 24 hours, the Prime Minister’s condition had worsened to the point that he needed to be moved to an intensive care ward.

Several top figures in Westminster and Royals have either been diagnosed with, or have self-isolated over, the China coronavirus. The health secretary Matt Hancock was diagnosed on the same day as the Prime Minister but recovered shortly after. Cabinet Brexit coordinator Michael Gove is self-isolating after a member of his family started to show symptoms yesterday.

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