Matt Hancock, the UK’s Health Secretary, has been in close contact with somebody who tested positive and will be working from home until Sunday
Health Secretary Matt Hancock has revealed he is self-isolating for the next six days after being “pinged” by the NHS coronavirus app.
In a video posted to his Twitter account on Tuesday morning, Mr Hancock – who on Monday afternoon fronted a Downing Street briefing on COVID-19 – said he would now be remaining at home at all times until Sunday.
This comes after the UK’s vaccines minister has said that he is hoping to target key workers in the country such as police officers, shop workers and teachers in the next phase of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.
“Last night I was pinged by the NHS coronavirus app, so that means I’ll be self-isolating at home, not leaving the house at all, until Sunday,” he said.
“This self-isolation is perhaps the most important part of all the social distancing, because I know from the app that I’ve been close contact with somebody who’s tested positive.”
“And this is how we break the chains of transmission. So you must follow these rules, like I’m going to.”
“I’ve got to work from home for the next six days and together, by doing this, by following this and all the other panapoly of rules that we’ve had to put in place, we can get through this and beat this virus.”
At Monday’s coronavirus news conference from Number 10, at which he appeared alongside Public Health England’s Dr Susan Hopkins and NHS England’s Professor Stephen Powis, Mr Hancock made a direct appeal to the public for Britons to stick to COVID rules.
As the roll out of coronavirus vaccines continues across the UK, the health secretary said:
“Don’t blow it now, we’re on the route out.”
“We’re protecting the most vulnerable, we’re getting the virus under control. Together, I know that we can do it.”
Former chancellor George Osborne on Tuesday questioned why Mr Hancock himself had not yet received a COVID vaccine.
This comes after the NHS is considering plans to discharge it’s patients into hotels as the nation’s hospitals become packed with COVID-19 patients, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has now confirmed, saying that it was “impossible to know” how long the nation-wide lockdown restrictions might last.
“It’s a peculiarly British trait that we rightly make vaccinating millions of health workers a priority, but we can’t spare a single dose for the health secretary leading the response to the pandemic,” Mr Osborne, who once employed Mr Hancock as his chief of staff, posted on Twitter.
Government guidance states that it is not yet known whether receiving a COVID vaccine will stop you from catching and passing on the virus.
Therefore, those who have been vaccinated are told they still need to follow the current COVID rules on social distancing and self-isolation.