The first cases of Coronavirus in the UK were detected on the 31st January in a hotel in York.
A public health information campaign was launched after the first cases were confirmed similar to the ‘Catch it Bin it Kill it campaign’ from previous years.
Chief medical adviser Chris Whitty stated in February:
“we basically have a strategy which depends upon four tactical aims: the first is to contain, the second is to delay, the third is to do the science and research, and the fourth is to mitigate to brace the NHS.”
As of the 8th March, there are now 273 confirmed cases in the UK with the government message being ‘not to panic and to carry on as normal’.
The update to the 111 service is the latest in a line of measures to satisfy public demand for advice and information.
‘Around 500 additional initial call responders have already been trained’
This is to combat 120,000 calls made in the first week of March.
Matt Hancock took to Twitter yesterday to announce ‘further proposed measures’ to combat Coronavirus COVID-19.
“Tackling Coronavirus is a national effort. We’re taking more action to help prepare”
The measures expected to be announced in the COVID-19 Emergency Bill include ‘an expansion of video hearings in courts and new powers to make it easier for volunteers to support the fight against COVID-19’
Additional guidance to be given to those self-isolating.
The government is also proposing that civil proceedings ‘to be conducted via telephone or video’
Matt Hancock has further reiterated the government’s resolve in responding to the current outbreak:
“Public safety is my top priority. Responding to coronavirus is a massive national effort and I’m working with colleagues across government to ensure we have a proportionate emergency bill, with the right measures to deal with the impacts of a widespread COVID-19 outbreak.”