What did at Matt Hancock say at today’s coronavirus press conference? – The Sun

THE Thursday press conference was chaired by Health and Social Secretary Matt Hancock, Medical Director of NHS England, Prof. Steve Powis, and Prof John Newton.

Here's everything you need to know about what went on today and a recap of yesterday's briefing from Business Secretary Sharma.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

When was today's press conference?

Today's press conference started just after 5.25pm and was broadcast live by the BBC.

It is generally held in Downing Street between 4pm and 6pm and lasts 15 to 30 minutes.

The briefings have been ongoing since March 16.

Who hosted today's briefing?

Today's briefing was hosted by Health and Social Secretary Matt Hancock.

He was joined by Medical Director of NHS England, Prof. Steve Powis, and Prof John Newton.

What was discussed in today's briefing?

The agenda of the daily briefing centred around Matt Hancock's NHS testing masterplan.

Health and Social Secretary said that more beds, staff and equipment are now being made available and that £13.4bn of NHS Trust debts have been written off.

He mentioned the construction of the NHS Nightingale hospital and thanked every body involved.

At the beginning of the briefing he also thanked everyone who has followed the social distancing guidelines.

He also shared the latest figures, with 12,949 having been admitted to hospital with the virus and 2,921 UK deaths due to the deadly bug.

Hancock said that he has made £300m available for funding community pharmacies.

He outlined challenges the nation faces and the plan to drive the plan forward.

"I understand why NHS staff want tests, so they can get back to the frontline,"

"I am proud that every single patient who has needed a test for life saving treatment has had access"

He said it is important that the public confidence in the tests: "Approving tests that don't work is dangerous and I will not do it".

The ultimate goal, he said, is that everyone that needs a test will have one.

He said that he returned from illness more determined than ever to tackle the virus, working with our friends and allies across the world.

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Who hosted yesterday's briefing and what happened?

Yesterday's briefing was hosted by Business Secretary Alok Sharma.

He was joined by Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance and PHE Medical Director and Director for Health Protection, Prof. Yvonne Doyle CB.

Sharma opened the briefing to reinforce the action plan of aiming to slow the spread of the virus and protect the NHS.

He continued: 'The pandemic is the biggest threat our country has faced in decades but we are not alone.'

The Business Secretary recognised the extreme disruption (the lockdown) is having on our lives and thanked those making an effort to help tackle the pandemic, as well as frontline workers and businesses.

He also said local authorities have received £12 billion for grants to small businesses to help them survive.

Dr Yvonne Doyle mentioned there was a 'slightly concerning trend' – an increase in motor traffic.

She also said the target of conducting 10,000 tests a day has been reached, adding she is 'confident' the UK can reach 25,000.

In regards to the antibody test, Sharma said the government are 'urgently evaluating' it and that it is an 'absolute priority'.

On lockdown, Sharma said stopping restrctions too early could bring a second wave.

Dr Doyle added that the restrictions will be reviewed after Easter and will be guided by how the epidemic is progressing.

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