Great Britain

Boris Johnson ‘sitting up in bed’ and improving as he fights coronavirus in intensive care

BORIS Johnson is sitting up in bed — but faces more than a month off work because of his coronavirus ordeal.

The Prime Minister spent his third night in intensive care in London’s St Thomas’ Hospital, half a mile from Downing Street, after being taken there on Monday.

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No10 said he was “responding to treatment” and had been chatting to his doctors again.

He is also passing the odd message back to fiancée Carrie Symonds and Downing Street via his medical staff, having been stripped of his phones when he was admitted to hospital.

But Downing Street conceded that Mr Johnson, 55, would be off work for weeks and even months if that was what his doctors advised.

Medical experts say seriously ill patients will generally need one week of recuperation for every day spent in an ICU.

Insisting no date has been set for Mr Johnson’s return, the PM’s official spokesman said: “The Prime Minister will absolutely follow the advice of his medical team.”

The heartening news of his improvement was given by Chancellor Rishi Sunak, who told No10’s daily press conference: “The latest from the hospital is the Prime Minister remains in intensive care where his condition is improving.

“I can also tell you that he has been sitting up in bed and engaging positively with the clinical team.”

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Mr Sunak added: “The Prime Minister is not only my colleague and my boss but also my friend and my thoughts are with him and his family.”

But he ducked saying when he expected to see his neighbour, who has devolved his responsibilities while he is in hospital, back in Downing Street.

Mr Johnson’s father Stanley, 79, said he expected his son to go to his official country retreat Chequers to recuperate for weeks.

President Donald Trump also announced in a press conference that Mr Johnson is "doing much better" after he spoke with Downing Street.

Mr Trump sent his regards to the PM and his family and friends, adding: "He's still going through a tough time, but he seems to be doing better."

Aides thanked well-wishers from around the world who have deluged Downing Street with messages of support.

The PM’s official spokesman added: “We are hugely grateful for the messages of support that the Prime Minister has received.

“The public response to coronavirus throughout has been fantastic.”

Meanwhile, however, fears were growing over the health of the PM’s top aide Dominic Cummings, 48, after it emerged he was still too unwell to work.

The maverick adviser spent his tenth day in self-isolation having shown symptoms the day after Mr Johnson tested positive.

No10 would only say he was “in contact” with staff but would not be drawn over whether he had required medical attention.

It sparked fears that his health was worsening — with doctors warning that the tenth day of showing symptoms was a turning point in a patient’s health.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab — Mr Johnson’s de facto deputy — will remain in charge of the country for as long as it takes for him to recover, the Government insists.

And that will include deputising for him in Brexit negotiations where he needs to talk to European leaders directly.


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Downing Street said: “The First Secretary is deputising for the Prime Minister.

“There is a very clear plan to respond to coronavirus as set out by the PM.”

No10 added of Boris: “He is being treated by a superb medical team and we will follow their clinical advice.”

Sun doctor Carol Cooper on PM's fight

Best case scenario

IT’S reassuring to know that Boris Johnson is still breathing on his own without a ventilator some three days since he was transferred to ICU.

The best case scenario is that the PM leaves intensive care in the next day or two, feeling unwell but with no long-term organ damage.

Then, instead of rushing into work, he would be well advised to take several weeks off to convalesce.

I would suggest six weeks as a minimum.

He’s getting what medics call supportive care, including oxygen, fluids and nursing.

Staff are also looking at his heart function, kidneys and liver.

The immune system’s response to the virus is essential to recovery.

But sometimes it goes into overdrive and causes problems, such as sepsis, and must be monitored.

Medium case scenario

A MORE worrying outcome is still possible and sees the Prime Minister developing serious complications such as lung or heart disease.

Covid-19 is very new so doctors still don’t know everything about it.

Long-term breathlessness is a problem for some, causing an inability to carry on with usual activities.

About 20 per cent of the more seriously ill can get heart trouble that could lead to on­going ill health.

It all depends on what sort of complications he was to suffer, but it is unfortunately possible Boris would not be able to return to work at all.

The PM is known to be a fighter but that’s neither here nor there.

When people succumb to this cruel infection, it’s not because they lacked fighting spirit.

The Sun says

BRITAIN has been badly shaken by the coronavirus pandemic.

That the life of our recently elected Prime Minister should be in such peril has come as a body blow.

But Boris Johnson has overcome the odds before and can do so again.

In 2008 he surprised many to become Mayor of London, a Labour city. In 2016 he beat the odds again to lead the Leave campaign to an astonishing and unforeseen referendum victory.

And just four months ago, he smashed them to pieces to win a whopping great mandate in the General Election.

With the help of our terrific NHS, we trust that he will beat this too.

Right now, though, he is facing the fight of his life. And he and his pregnant fiancée need the support of the country they love.

So today, let’s put aside party politics. Let’s ignore the vile tweets. And let’s take a moment out of our days to pray for Boris Johnson: father, father to be, and powerhouse Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.

Get well soon, sir. The nation needs you.

Dominic Raab reveals he hasn't spoke to Boris Johnson since Saturday after PM was hospitalised with coronavirus

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