tv British Prime Minister Johnson Coronavirus Briefing CSPAN March 26, 2020 5:40pm-6:11pm EDT
someone struggling with an addiction and struggling with bleak conditions in their life. maybe they are homeless and suddenly mental illness that was untreated and someone you see on the side of the road living under a bridge panhandling on the subway. i was very wrong. although addiction community there are plenty of people at the top of the socioeconomic ladder struggling as well. british prime minister boris johnson provided an update on his government's coronavirus response at a press briefing in london. his chief medical officer and chief scientific adviser also answered several questions on the timeline of coronavirus tests being made available to national health service workers.
>> good afternoon. thank you for joining us for today's daily briefing on coronavirus. i like to update you on the government's plan to defeat the virus and the latest developments. i'm joined once again by her chief medical officer professor chris wiki and chief economic adviser. from the beginning of this crisis that followed the advice of our world's leading scientists to defeat coronavirus by taking the right measures at the right time. what everybody needs to recognize is our nhs like any health service have very limited
numbers of doctors and nurses and special equipment. the more people who become sick at any one time the harder it is for the nhs. so it's vital to delay the spread of the disease and reduce the number of people needing hospital treatment at any one time. that's why we have given clear instructions that people must stay at home unless they have one of the reasons we set out and with your help we were slow the spread of the disease. we want to thank everybody for following the clear rules we set out on monday and i want to thank everyone on the frontline in the fight against coronavirus and of course all of our public services. our teachers and their transport workers police officers everyone is keeping this country going.
what i also want to offer special thank you to everyone who has volunteered to help the nhs. we hope to get 255 volunteers over few days but i can tell you in just 24 hours 405,000 people have responded to the call. they will be driving patients home from hospitals and very importantly they will be making regular phonecalls to check on and support people for staying on their own at home and they will be absolutely crucial in the fight against this virus. already in one day many volunteers in the population of coventry. to all the former nhs who are
coming back into the service i say thank you on behalf of the entire country. now i want to take some questions but finally i want to remind everyone of our call policy. stay at home, protect the nhs and save lives. thank you. i think we'll go straight to the questions now and we are going to give first of all laura at of the bbc. laura are you there? >> can you honestly say that government is coping with there aren't enough test and people are struggling to make ends meet some people are being forced to go to work when they don't feel that they are safe. is that posting an qunai as the medics as well if we are to have the kind of number of tested like to see how much of a
difference would it have made in your bilicki to fight the disease? >> first of all laura on the test a huge national program oft i will hand it over to chris and patrick to talk about how we are going to do it. on the national efforts to protect those whose livelihoods are threatened i think everybody understands the challenge to the whole country but we have to get this together and we are getting through it together with an unprecedented program of support for not just businesses but for workers of all kinds across the country. never in our history since the government put its arms around people and the way that we are doing now to help them get through this difficult time. yes it's absolutely true the measures to support people in employment are extraordinary.
80% of the salary up to 2500 pounds per month we are standing behind and in the course of the next couple of days we will be hearing more from the chancellor tomorrow about what we are doing to help the self-employed. i think people do understand the complexity of working arrangements and it has been harder to come up with the right program for the self-employed as well but that's coming forward tomorrow. i do think when you look at the scale of what the government is doing to get this country through and we will talk to your question directly we will cope and we are doing very well in the most challenging as possible circumstances. but to enable us to get through dwell together and to come out well together as i think we can,
and i know we can come is that we all follow the instructions that the government has given to stay home, protect the nhs and that's a way to stabilize but oy something. >> in terms of testing testing e broad testing some of which we have test available and have done and some of which we have not. i'll run through the different assets they were tight and effort starting up with the antigen testing testing which ig of the disease initially we are using that to help screen people who came from other countries. we have moved on to testing people in intensive care in hospitals and we have sufficient tests for that at the moment and working fine in being scaled up or down side place and working well. we are confident on the testingg
and the data. the thing would like to see max which was certainly make a difference definitely to the nhs is the nhs and other principle workers who are self-isolating that currently are not being tested and did not have sufficient testing. this is a global problem because almost every country is launching this new test essentially being tested anywhere three months ago. everybody wanted. the next priority is to get critical workers back to work. we definitely would like that to support the nhs. once we have more testing testin we want to test the much wider range of people with mild versus -- symptoms. we obviously like to stay and separately they are the test which we will want to have which
are not evaluate it that are going to be critical that can tell someone whether they have had the virus and antibody test. you can't do that in the first few days after a fever but after a few weeks and possibly as short as one week and that will allow us to allow it and it just workers and other workers to know if you have an affect -- infection for the short time and possibly for quite a long temper and we think is likely or protect against this and you can get back to work and if you get another call for fever that's not going to be coronavirus. that's a technology that's been evaluated this week but on the first one the bottleneck is largely global shortages which we are obviously doing our level best to free up. to be able to protect health care workers for now. it's absolutely crucial and yes we need more of it as chris is
said and the other thing that's going to be important of antibody test to be able to work out how many people have had the disease a symptomatically and that's important to understand on what to do next. these tests are crucially important. we need more of them and people are working hard to get them in place. >> the one fine -- thing that's worth notice instead of telling someone inaccurately whether they have or have not had it is dangerous elite don't want to go ahead with testing testing untie confident. that is so important. if it means a delay to get there that delay is worth having because that is as chris said if you tell someone it's okay you haven't got it and they have got it that's a bad position to be hampered if you tell someone they are immune from it and are not that's not a good position to be in. you must assure to get a quality absolutely right.
to patrick in the numbers of people that have the disease it is hastened or radically pare his study i saw from academic saying as many as 50% may have had it a symptomatically. i think a lot of people have seen not. how do you evaluate that? >> we simply don't know at the moment. that's why the antibody test is so important. their estimates up to 80% or more of people who have them were detected in their estimates of those who are -- and that's a small percentage of the population tested positive and quite a number of them were a cement -- asymptomatic in a town in italy. that's why it's important to get the test in place. >> i think you. >> just a couple of questions for you said earlier other
countries such as italy he said were two or three weeks behind have now to boost the very strict lock down. wouldn't you save more lives if you did keep all nonessential workers at home and if i may a question on testing. it was said to day 35 million te to show whether you've had coronavirus or not. in practical terms we will get those tests and in broader terms how transformational do you think this would be in terms of fighting coronavirus? thank you. >> thank you very much. in terms of the epidemiological values of what we are doing and asking people to stay at home i think mostly i can repeat the
basic message which is if you can stay at home you overwhelmingly should stay at home and that's our most important advice. important advice. successfully necessary for you to go to work to a place of work then it's vital that your employer follows the rules of public health in england and ensure you have the protection you need for the proper rules on social distancing to apply. i wonder if i could ask others to comment on the value of what we are doing in terms of not closing down the whole uk economy which we are not doing that we are certainly asking people to stay at home. >> i can certainly given answer. the first thing is the modeling every country does it differently and every country
fight the epidemic differently and all of us are dealing with the new infection and therefore have a low base in terms of advice to give but the modeling we have done here which patrick and talk about in more detail was based on the idea that quite a lot of people would have to go to work as part of its and that's the basis on which the modeling is done. we absolutely need people to avoid anything that is in any way discretionary where people can choose whether they did it or not. that's why all of their social activity has to stop to allow these essential things to continue. that's the basis of doing this. there's an additional reason which we have to remember many of the things we have to do have to be sustained for a reasonably
long period of time and broadly the morgue difficult for people less easy it is but there's some degree of trade-off. in terms of testing testing i we really clear about we what can and can't do. we certainly have in the uk a lot of tests and going back to the previous answer patrick's previous answer are we able to look at these tests accurately enough and if they are incredibly acrid then we will work at a quick and effective way to release these. if it turns out none of them are accurate we would not wish to release any of them. and accurate testing is indeed something we should really be avoiding that the thing went to be really fast is the evaluation and we will be able to decide what to do next. maybe patrick if you'd like to add anything on the modeling side.
>> what we are trying to do is to break the transmission of the virus from one household to another and trying to break the transmission of the virus. to do that we need to keep -- and the clearest ways to stay in your house and that's the core message. there are people who have to go to work. you cannot stay in the house all day and there are others as well then it's important to break the transmission where possible. that's what we need to keep focusing on. we are trying to stop the transmission of this virus between people and between households to break that chambered in terms of whether - it will completely transform what we can do in the short-run. the antibody test is the one i was talking about in big numbers. less important than the antigen test in the previous answer.
>> the should have said more clearly perhaps at the beginning that you should stay at home except for those few exceptions and if people have forgotten. you need to get essential supplies on a specific medical mission helping the vulnerable or taking daily exercise to remember that daily exercise is very important provided you stay away from a lot of people. gary from channel 4. sema prime minister the frontline staff of the national health service they want that tests for covid-19. they wanted now and the house of commons again and again you said they will get it as soon as possible. people might have a little bit more confidence if you can answer this question. how did we come to be so
woefully behind as the country where we can't evaluate and deploy tests in much bigger numbers already. >> thanks gary. i'll give you the answer i gave in the house of commons. we are massively ramping up oure numbers of tests to see whether you have had it already but alsr they currently have it the antigen and antibody tests that are being described. the health secretary has said we are going from 5000 to 10,000 tests a day to 25,000 and hopefully very soon 250,000 a day. to answer your question about the type to test that we have the differences that you see between the uk provisions of te.
they think it could be passed to chris and patrick to explain. >> in terms of the testing first of all why the delay in the uk system? there are multiple components to these tests. there are shortages along many of these supply chains that in every country in the world in launching this new thing. it's something which is obviously extraordinarily -- and that's just a reality. it anyone who understands how the supply chain works and the huge demand globally would understand that. it's quite difficult. different countries have different testing testing. we need to look at those countries that have gotten moree
doing it as best we can in meeting our own testing testing. that's something we are doing very actively at the moment. looking at the numbers we have done 97,000 tests already. what we need clearly is to be able to do more. >> i would just add to that we have done many more tests than most other european countries and you are totally right gary that's the priorities should be and will be getting those tests to our frontline in the nhs and we are going to do that as fast as we possibly can. ..
british prime minister borisjoh: how would you prioritize to get this test will be just a scramble to verify the test results, pretty simple about whether you can work with the people. and go back to normal work perhaps. and having you collected the results so that you can see what is happening elsewhere. it is self testing, and is obviously very important results. statement one sleep are confident about our test products, the hierarchy of things, answering that critical question that patrick was talking about. how many people get this without any symptoms. his that is a big indication on
how we will manage this. then we will get the workers tested so that we can work out people who are immune to this test. in the infections, and basically go out in front from there. i do not think i want to be clear that this is something that we will deal with on the internet next week. we need to go to the evaluations and then spread it out from that point of view. we need to do that in a symptomatically. >> the first thing that we need to do is attract the information and to understand this epidemic. so is not 3.5 million, we need to answer the critical questions and need to make sure that the right people get this test first. chris whitty: and the other points.
>> foreign minister, you have to be drunk into taken the action the human announced. also if i may, may suggest that we might introduce some things are you angry. people trying to exploit this crisis. this included jail terms. patrick vallance: right from the beginning, we were going to do the right measures at the right time. and according to political dictatorship. and it's going to be in the best scientific ways. this is good reason for wanting to tackle an epidemic strictly in accordance with the
scientific advisor that's when we have done and continue believe that is the right approach for this country in the right approach for the uk. we have the best scientists and advisors in the world and we continue to follow them. in a different question about public hearing, i just like it very much. i do not want to see people profiteering, exploiting people's needs, a critical time. the national emergency. so we are indeed looking very captive of what is going on. in the markets have already had various powers that may be used but we are looking at the largest ledge of the what it may be necessary to do to prevent profiteering and justice thing that is happened in wartime. many years ago. british prime minister boris johnson: do you want for anything or add anything to that.
patrick vallance: household isolation, now we've got a very strong packaging. the one thing that i would say, it is incredibly important that we stick to it. it's incredibly important that people understand that this is about breaking the transmission of the virus and we can only do that if we all do it. british prime minister boris >> by tomorrow it'd already bet. reporter: if they continue to work, they will expose others. what is your message to them. and to the cma, what is the current occupation rate in the england and can be confident that the measurements will prevent and not overwhelm. british prime minister boris johnson: i will just repeat what i said
before. i think the government has moved with extraordinary. pat: support and get a hold of the economy of this country. putting our arms around workers. at the best expense that we possibly can. and it of course it was easier to move the furthest and found the passes with employees. in the details of course are available. it is been more complex as you can understand to support the self-employed because they have been many different arrangements that they have in span tricky to work out a package that will address the need for many people. but that is being done in an incredible speed. we should be announcing a package tomorrow. in our history, and the last century, certainly when the government of this country has put his arms around so many
people. and again it's a very tough time. we will get through this and we will get through this together. reporter: some of this point in time, as of today, there is not an enormous pressure compared to that or even normal winter day. but we expect the demand for critical care beds to continue to rise over the next few weeks. it is entirely what we expect and what will happen. and clearly the demand will go up from the coronavirus. now because of the actions that people are taking. everybody continues to keep the social distancing measures which are very difficult in terms of staying within the household, and doing the essential things apart from exercise. that will help to calm down the demand a very long ways. that can help people in the general public. all of his heart helping.
at the same time, it's increasing supply of either combination of pushing out in time, things which can be postponed and increasing the critical particularly the ventilator beds. in this over the next weeks. and we are, while this will going to be a close run thing. we all know that right anybody looks around the world, knows that is taxing every health system. but that the measures that are being and now some of the general public, all of us have to do. if you want to get through this without exceeding its capacity. and the fantastic work by the nhs. to increase supply. that is the way that we will narrow this gap to the smallest possible gap for the next three weeks. and we do think that if everybody, sticks to staying in her household, this gap will be
probably, but we cannot guarantee that. and no anybody sensible would wish to guarantee that. that's what we are planning for and that's what we intend will happen. british prime minister boris johnson: thank you everybody. and thank you for media over there. and thank you all for watching this and for being useful and we will be back tomorrow. there will be another update tomorrow. on the fight against coronavirus to remember the essentials and we will be this and we will be get together we will do it by protecting and bite staying at home. that is how we will save lives. reporter: inc. you everybody. [silence].
>> a special live evening edition of washington journal examining the federal and state response to the coronavirus join us with your questions and comments weeknights at eight eastern. now coronavirus breathing with canadian prime minister trudeau, he as those who are losing their incomes as a result of the outbreak. there will be an announcement. canadian prime minister trudeau: right now, a lot of people are sitting around the kitchen table with bills trying to figure out what needs to be paid. and how to plan for the coming months. if you've been laid off, and your hours reduced or you are worried about your industry,