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What Boris Johnson said on COVID-19 from inside quarantine


Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday lamented the latest coronavirus data that showed a record increase of deaths in Britain, saying it was a "sad, sad day."


"Good evening. I want to bring you up to date on some of the things the government is doing to defeat the coronavirus epidemic in this country and around the world. And first of all, let's be in no doubt, this has been a sad, sad day. 563 more cases are, a record, in a single day.


Our thoughts go out to the families of the victims, all their friends. But let's be in no doubt that if we can follow the program that we're currently set upon, if we can comply with the measures that we've embarked on together, then I have absolutely no doubt that we will begin to start to push those numbers down, and we will turn the tide of the coronavirus, as I say, in the course of the next few weeks and months.


Now, I want to bring you up to speed on some of the things that we're doing, above all, to protect our NHS. And we've shipped just in the last couple of weeks 397 million separate pieces of personal protective equipment to look after our amazing NHS staff and the Army Reservist and others are doing a quite amazing job of shipping that stuff around the country.


We're also massively increasing testing. And I want to say a special word about testing, because it is so important and as I've said for for weeks and weeks, this is the way through. This is how we will unlock the coronavirus puzzle. This is how we will defeat it in the end.


And what we need to do is massively ramp up, not just tests so that you can know whether you've had the disease in the past, the so-called antibody tests, because that will enable you to go to work in the confidence that you can't be infected on or infectious.


Second, people need to know whether they haven't got it, rather than isolating themselves at home for no reason, and that's very, very important above all for our NHS staff.


And of course, it's crucial that people who do have the disease are able to to be tested positive and to take the necessary steps to isolate at home in the way that I am doing and many, many others are doing as well.


And I just want to reassure you on that last point that although I am sequestered here in Number 10 Downing Street, I am thanks to miracles of modern technology able to be in constant touch with my officials, with everybody in the various departments across the whole of Whitehall who is coordinating the response to coronavirus.


And I'm absolutely confident that we will beat it and we will beat it together and we will do it by staying at home, protecting our NHS and saving lives. Thanks very much."