British Health Minister and Conservative MP, Nadine Dorries, has tested positive for Coronavirus. This has raised concerns about whether senior government officials have also been infected.
The Department of Health said Ms. Dorries first showed symptoms on Thursday – the same day she attended an event hosted by the prime minister.
In a statement she said;
“I can confirm I have tested positive for coronavirus… and have been self-isolating at home”.
“I would like to thank… the wonderful NHS staff who have provided me with advice and support,” she said, referring to Britain’s National Health Service.
Dorries added that Health officials are trying to trace where she got infected with the virus and who she has been in contact with.
She later tweeted;
Thanks for so many good wishes. It’s been pretty rubbish but I hope I’m over the worst of it now. More worried about my 84yo mum who is staying with me and began with the cough today. She is being tested tomorrow. Keep safe and keep washing those hands, everyone.
— Nadine Dorries 🇬🇧 (@NadineDorries) March 10, 2020
About six people have died in Britain over Coronavirus with 382 confirmed cases.
Dorries, who helped craft the legislation to fight the bug, is the first British politician to be diagnosed with COVID-19.
According to reports, she had been in touch with hundreds of people, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson. She fell unwell on Friday while signing the document that declared coronavirus a notifiable disease, meaning companies could obtain insurance cover.
The shock news is likely to increase calls to suspend parliament, despite the government’s reluctance to do so in the middle of a health crisis.
Her boss Matt Hancock tweeted;
1/2: Really sorry to hear Nadine has tested positive for coronavirus. She has done the right thing by self isolating at home, and both NHS and PHE staff have been brilliant. We all wish her well as she recovers.
— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) March 10, 2020
Finance minister Rishi Sunak will on Wednesday unveil the government’s first post-Brexit budget, with all eyes on emergency government measures to ease the economic pain from the coronavirus outbreak.
He is expected to give the state-run National Health Service whatever it needs to help combat the virus and promise temporary support for businesses hit by cash flow issues. The Bank of England’s incoming chief Andrew Bailey last week said UK-based companies would need help in the face of disruption to supplies caused by the virus.