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Friday, April 17, latest;

Business Secretary Alok Sharma gave the April 17, 2020 daily press briefing, and set out the steps identified by the Government to defeat coronavirus.

He confirmed the action plan is aiming to slow the spread of the virus so fewer people need hospital treatment at any one time, protecting the NHS’s ability to cope.

Sharma also confirmed that unprecedented action is being taken to increase NHS capacity by dramatically expanding the numbers of beds, key staff and life-saving equipment on the front-line to give people the care they need when they need it most.

“This is why we are instructing people to stay at home, so we can protect our NHS and save lives,” said Sharma.

“And as the Foreign Secretary outlined yesterday, the current social distancing measures will remain in place for at least the next 3 weeks.”

Sharma also outlined the five tests that must be satisfied before it will considered safe to adjust any of the current measures.

  1. Protect the NHS’s ability to cope – and have confidence that sufficient critical care and specialist treatment can be provided right across the UK.
  2. To see a sustained and consistent fall in the daily death rate from coronavirus to be confident that the country has moved beyond the peak.
  3. To have reliable data from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) showing that the rate of infection is decreasing to manageable levels across the board.
  4. Confidence that the range of operational challenges, including testing capacity and PPE, are in hand, with supply able to meet future demand.
  5. Any adjustments to the current measures will not risk a second peak of infections that overwhelm the NHS.