Coronavirus in UK live blog: latest as Boris Johnson make first speech since hospitalisation

Follow the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak in our live blog below

By Finlay Greig
Monday, 27th April 2020, 7:54 am
Updated Monday, 27th April 2020, 11:17 am

We will be providing live updates until 6pm this evening.

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A jogger passes Buckingham Palace; the 40th London Marathon was due to take place this weekend, but has been postponed until October due to coronavirus (Photo: Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

Coronavirus live blog, April 27

Last updated: Monday, 27 April, 2020, 11:49

The Health Secretary starts by introducing the briefing's new format. 

From today members of the public will be allowed to ask questions at the daily press conference. 

He says that over 15,000 questions have been asked by the public.

Prime Minister to take part in minute's silence for frontline workers

Boris Johnson will observe the minute's silence for frontline workers who have lost their lives to coronavirus on Tuesday.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman said: "We will be supporting the minute's silence.

"We will be asking everybody who works in the Government to take part and we would hope that others will take part nationwide as well."

Just 29,058 tests a day being carried out

The latest testing statistics showed the Government still appears to be way off meeting its 100,000 daily target by the end of the month.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman said that 29,058 tests had been carried out in England, Scotland and Wales in the 24 hours up to 9am on Saturday.

But he cautioned that the numbers do have the "significant time lag" often seen on Monday, not reflecting the change over the weekend or the boost from the new testing portal.

War language could stop people seeking mental health help

Referring to the coronavirus outbreak as a war to be fought may deter people in a mental health crisis from seeking help, a charity has warned.

Suicide Crisis said the Covid-19 lockdown is causing "extreme mental suffering", but chief executive Joy Hibbins said those the charity is supporting "don't want to burden the NHS" at this time.

The charity has seen a "marked increase" in levels of distress and those seeking support, with a 40% rise in people getting in touch after it was announced that the lockdown would be extended.

Ms Hibbins said: "There is a sense in which we are all trying to pull together in the national interest and in particular to defeat the virus.

"For some people, that will help create a feeling of unity and shared purpose. However, some people may feel that they are 'letting the side down' if they acknowledge that they are struggling and need help.

"There are lots of references to being 'strong'. If we are all feeling that we need to be strong, then it can make it harder to seek help - or show vulnerability. People can start to have feelings of guilt and shame about being in crisis."

Riz Ahmed reveals he has lost wo family members to coronavirus

Riz Ahmed has said he has lost two family members to coronavirus, adding the pandemic crisis is "reflecting and revealing the faultlines in our society".

The Venom actor and rapper said he hopes the surge of appreciation for the NHS draws attention to prejudice against the ethnic minorities that keep it running.

He told GQ Hype: "I'm seeing reports of India, where the government are calling it 'corona-jihad' and they're trying to blame it on the spread of Muslims and they are segregating hospitals between Muslims and non-Muslims.

"Trump is using it as an excuse to try to ban immigration and the Hungarian government is centralising power off the back of this.

"I'm looking at the fact it's hitting African-Americans twice as hard; I'm looking at the fact that 50% of NHS frontline workers - is it 50%? - are ethnic minorities."

Names of SAGE attendees to be published shortly

The names of some of the scientists who have been advising the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) will be published "shortly", the Government's chief scientific adviser has said.

Sir Patrick Vallance told a briefing for science journalists the identities of the experts are usually revealed after the emergency is over, and that had also been the advice for the coronavirus crisis.

However, he added: "But I believe that we should be more prepared to publish names sooner, and intend to do so shortly.

"So we will be publishing names of those that are happy to have their names published."

Ask a question at the daily press conference

The government are inviting questions from members of the public for their daily coronavirus press conference.

You can put forward your questions at

Public invited to ask question at daily press briefing

The government are inviting questions from members of the public for their daily coronavirus press conference.

You can put forward your questions at

Employment Minister welcomes back PM

Employment minister Mims Davies has welcomed the PM back, tweeting: "The Boss is back. Vital, uplifting, optimistic words from @BorisJohnson on the podium outside Number 10. His tone, balance & the message was just right & absolutely what we all needed."

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