Coronavirus update

April 22, 2020

Excellent to see the Armed Forces represented in tonight's press conference along with the First Secretary of State Dominic Raab and our Chief Medical Officer.


Key messages:

- We think that we have reached the peak with the daily numbers now steady and beginning to fall across the whole UK.


- As I've been saying, though we're hopefully over the peak it's clear that the lockdown is not likely to just be lifted overnight. Social distancing will be with us for some time to come, with only a very small chance of a vaccine being available before the end of the year.


- 3,000 military reserves have been deployed to help with key roles, such as delivery of PPE. This has helped to make things more flexible but Chief of Defence Staff Sir Nick Carter says it's the "single biggest logistical challenge he's come across".


- We've been successful in ensuring that the peak of the virus has not overwhelmed our NHS capacity, which was a key goal. We must now continue to adhere to the social distancing guidelines and ensure that we don't have a second wave. Numbers of cases will likely drop, but this will happen slowly over a long period.

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