The family of the hero NHS nurse who was with Boris Johnson ‘every second of the night’ when he was fighting for his life are ‘exceptionally proud’ of their ‘absolutely amazing’ daughter.
After he was discharged from St Thomas’s Hospital in central London, the Prime Minister recorded a video to thank all the doctors and nurses who looked after him.
He reserved special thanks for ‘Jenny from New Zealand, Invercargill on the South Island to be exact’ and ‘Luis from Portugal, near Porto’ who stood at his bedside for 48 hours when ‘it could have gone either way’.
Ward sister Jenny McGee, 35, moved to the UK eight years ago after doing her intensive care training in Melbourne and brushed off the praise, saying she was ‘just doing her job’.
Her mother Caroline spoke to her daughter today before she headed back to work another shift, claiming she is just pleased that the NHS is getting the ‘recognition it deserves’.
She told Television New Zealand: ‘It makes us feel exceptionally proud obviously. But she has told us these things over the years and it doesn’t matter what patient she is looking after, this is what she does.’
Mrs McGee added: ‘I just find it incredible that she, any nurses, can do this for 12 hours, sit and watch a patient and twiddle away with all the different knobs and things they do to keep their patients alive, it’s absolutely amazing.’
Jenny McGee, 35, (left) a ward sister at St Thomas’s Hospital in central London, has been praised for taking care of Boris Johnson – along with her colleague Luis Pitarma, 29 (right)
Jenny McGee’s family have been full of praise for her efforts in helping patients during the coronavirus pandemic
Ms McGee’s proud parents Caroline and Mike said their daughter brushed off any praise and is just please the NHS is getting the recognition it deserves
Her father, Mike McGee, said that she hadn’t told anyone she was treating the PM.
He said: ‘I think over the years she has always told us that her job is one-on-one nursing with very critically ill people and that means she’s there all the time for 12 hours.
‘So once we’d heard that Boris Johnson had gone into intensive care it was obvious that at some stage Jenny would possibly run into him and be giving him the same level of care that she would have given anybody else the week before or next week and we’re really proud of her.’
Rob McGee, Jenny’s brother, also heaped praise on his sister and NHS staff. He told MailOnline last night: ‘She is very humble and is back at work now for another night shift.
‘She said she was just really pleased to see all the hard working people in the NHS be recognised for the amazing work they are doing.’
Mr McGee added: ‘She is just doing her job, and that is how she sees it. This is what she was trained for, helping people who need care. [Medics are] special people.’
Ms McGee has been in the UK for eight years after studying here then moving to St Thomas’ in central London.
Ms McGee is pictured centre wearing a scarf with friends
Ms McGee, pictured left, has been in the UK for eight years after undertaking her Overseas Education (OE) here then moving to St Thomas’ in central London
She previously worked at the Royal Melbourne Hospital for six years where she did her intensive care training.
Ms McGee attended the Verdon College in Invercargill, and they said the community was ‘so proud’ and that she had wanted to be a nurse since leaving in 2002.
The school said: ‘Our sincerest admiration for the work and dedication of past pupil Jenny McGee who was singled out by UK Prime Minster Boris Johnson for helping him get through his serious illness due to COVID-19.
‘Jenny is described by her past teachers as an absolutely delightful person and someone who had a caring and humble nature.
‘Thanks Jenny for your courage, outstanding work and the example you have provided for everyone at this difficult time. Your old school community is so proud of you!’
Eve McSoriley met Ms McGee at choir while they were at college together and the pair have now been friends for more than 20 years.
She said her friend has a fantastic sense of humour, adding that she should ‘have a stand-up show’.
Ms McSoriley said nursing came ‘naturally’ to her friend and that her personal mention by the PM ‘says a lot about her personality and spirit’.
Ms McGee got a thanks from her own Prime Minister, New Zealand’s leader Jacinda Ardern, who decided to ‘send her a Facebook message’.
Ms Ardern told News Hub: ‘This morning, like many of you, I saw the reports of nurse Jenny from Invercargill being credited by Prime Minister Boris Johnson for his recovery,’ Ardern said while addressing media on Monday.
‘We’ve thanked our frontline health workers in New Zealand many times and rightly so, but I wanted to add an acknowledgement that many, many Kiwis work in healthcare around the world.
‘They show the same commitment, same care, same work ethic that they do here – and we’re all very proud of them, especially nurse Jenny.’
She added that her ‘informal tactic’ of sending Ms McGee a Facebook message has not yet worked as she has not received a response yet.
The other nurse mentioned by Mr Johnson – Luis from Portugal, near Porto – has been named as Luis Pitarma, 29, and has been thanked by Portuguese president Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa.
Mr Pitarma was born in Aveiro, just 30 miles from Porto, and is thought to have moved to London in 2014 after completing his medical qualifications in Lisbon.
A statement on the presidential website said: ‘President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa has already personally thanked the nurse Luis Pitarma, and… also thanks the commitment of all Portuguese health professionals who in Portugal and around the world are providing decisive help in the fight to the pandemic.’
The statement added that the president offered ‘encouragement that is also addressed to professionals of other nationalities who, reinforcing the National Health Service, provide an invaluable service to Portugal’.
His firefighter cousin Ivo Pitarma, who lives in Aveiro, said: ‘I’m obviously very proud.
‘I knew of course that Luis was a nurse in London but had no idea he had been looking after Boris Johnson so this has come as a real surprise for me.’
Mr Pitarma worked as a staff nurse at Luton and Dunstable Hospital NHS Foundation Trust for two years, caring for pre and post surgical patients, before moving to London and becoming an ICU staff nurse.
Mr Johnson, 55, spent a week at St Thomas’s Hospital but was reunited with his pregnant fiancee Carrie Symonds, 31, soon after he was discharged.
Mr Pitarma, from Aveiro, Portgual, circled in red, with colleagues. The nurse helped save Mr Johnson’s life and was praised by Portugal’s President
He will be continuing his recovery at the PM’s official residence in Buckinghamshire, Chequers.
In a video recorded shortly after he was discharged from St Thomas’s Hospital, Mr Johnson thanked the ‘utterly brilliant’ doctors, and praised the nurses for their ‘astonishing’ care.
Mr Pitarma worked as a staff nurse at Luton and Dunstable Hospital NHS Foundation Trust for two years, caring for pre and post surgical patients, before moving to London and becoming an ICU staff nurse
He said: ‘I want to thank the many nurses, men and women, whose care has been so astonishing.
‘I am going to forget some names, so forgive me, but I want to thank Po Ling and Shannon and Emily and Angel and Connie and Becky and Rachael and Nicky and Ann.’
Referring specifically to Ms McGee and senior nurse Mr Pitarma, he added: ‘The reason in the end my body did start to get enough oxygen was because for every second of the night they were watching and they were thinking and they were caring and making the interventions I needed.’
It came on another day of important coronavirus developments:
- Britain’s death toll rose by 737 to surge past 10,000 with one expert warning it was set to be the highest in Europe;
- It emerged the Cabinet is split over when to end the lockdown, with growing concerns about the impact of school closures;
- Michael Gove revealed he had been granted special dispensation to have his daughter tested for the virus so he could get back to work;
- The Archbishop of Canterbury urged that the dead be treated with dignity;
- Ministers admitted that only 4,200 of 300,000 small firms had been given loans;
- The Royal College of Nursing told its members to refuse to treat patients if they didn’t have adequate protective clothing;
- Some Britons flouted lockdown rules and were seen soaking up the sun in the nation’s parks;
- Health Secretary Hancock said he did not have any update on how many NHS staff had died following the 19 he confirmed on Saturday;
- The Queen stressed the importance of maintaining the coronavirus lockdown, but insisted: ‘Easter isn’t cancelled; indeed, we need Easter as much as ever’.
In the sobering address Mr Johnson also said the NHS would be ‘unconquerable’ in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.
He added: ‘I have today left hospital after a week in which the NHS has saved my life, no question.
‘It’s hard to find the words to express my debt – but before I come to that, I want to thank everyone in the entire UK for the effort and the sacrifice you have made and are making.’
He thanked people for continuing to socially distance and to self-isolate, saying: ‘I do believe that your efforts are worth it, and are daily proving their worth.’
While he said the ‘the struggle is by no means over’, he appeared to offer some hope by adding that progress is being made.
He said: ‘We are making progress in this national battle because the British public formed a human shield around this country’s greatest national asset – our National Health Service.’
Mr Johnson said he had personally ‘seen the pressure the NHS is under’ and listed the essential staff including cleaners, cooks and all healthcare workers who he said had shown ‘personal courage’ by continuing to work and ‘risking this deadly virus’.
He said: ‘It is thanks to that courage, that devotion, that duty and that love that our NHS has been unbeatable.’
As well as the dedicated nurses mentioned by Mr Johnson, his care was also overseen by some of the best physicians in the country, such as Richard Leach, a senior clinician at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital.
Luis Pitarma’s (pictured) firefighter cousin Ivo Pitarma, who lives in Aveiro, said: ‘I’m obviously very proud’
Dr Leach has worked at the central London hospital trust since 1994, and at King Edward VII Hospital since 2016.
His encyclopaedic knowledge of the respiratory system has even been laid down in five leading textbooks.
While Dr Leach had reportedly assumed ultimate responsibility over Mr Johnson’s treatment, hospital sources warned against exaggerating how hands-on a role he was playing.
Another medical professional thought to be overseeing the Prime Minister while he spent time at hospital was Dr Luigi Camporota, a consultant in intensive care medicine.
Just last week, Dr Camporota, held a seminar explaining to other hospitals the best way to attach a coronavirus patient to a ventilator.
In a tweet following her fiance’s release from hospital, Carrie Symonds said there had been some ‘very dark’ times in the past week.
Dr Richard Leach, senior clinician at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital, is responsible for the Prime Minister’s coronavirus recovery and had been at his bedside
Another medical professional thought to be overseeing the Prime Minister while he spent time at the hospital was Dr Luigi Camporota, a consultant in intensive care medicine
His pregnant fiancee Carrie Symonds tweeted her praise for staff at St Thomas’s Hospital, adding: ‘There were times last week that were very dark indeed
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the PM’s recovery was ‘great news’ but added: ‘The fact that over 10,000 people have now lost their lives to this invisible killer demonstrates just how serious coronavirus is and why the national effort that everyone in engaged in is so important.’
Shadow health secretary Jon Ashworth was among those who wished the PM a speedy recovery, tweeting: ‘Best wishes to the Prime Minister for a continued recovery.
‘I know our NHS staff everywhere are showing themselves again to be exceptional and brave in caring for all our loved ones at this time of health emergency. ‘
Shortly after news of his release, Ms Symonds had tweeted to pay tribute to the ‘magnificent NHS’.
She said: ‘I will never, ever be able to repay you and I will never stop thanking you.
‘There were times last week that were very dark indeed. My heart goes out to all those in similar situations, worried sick about their loved ones.
‘Thank you also to everyone who sent such kind messages of support. Today I’m feeling incredibly lucky.’
Stanley Johnson said he was delighted by the latest update, said he hopes his son ‘does not overdo it’ while recovering at Chequers.
Mr Johnson, who is at his farm in Exmoor, said: ‘I am absolutely delighted to hear the news that Boris has left hospital – it is wonderful news.
Boris Johnson’s Covid-19 journey:
March 3: Mr Johnson dismissed the trend for coronavirus ‘elbow bumps’ – saying he is perfectly happy to keep shaking hands with people
March 5: He shook hands with Mr Schofield and Mrs Willoughby as he appeared on This Morning to reassure Britons
March 6: He meets scientists as he visits testing laboratory at Bedford Technology Park
March 8: Surveys flood defences in the Worcestershire town of Bewdley
March 9: He attempts to shake hands with a bishop at Westminster Abbey before stopping himself
March 10: Says people should avoid shaking hands, to shame other people into washing their hands
March 12: Mr Johnson says preventing mass gatherings is not an effective way to tackle coronavirus
March 16: He advises against mass gatherings in policy U-turn
March 17: Talks about importance of social distancing at briefing with Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Chief Scientific Officer Patrick Vallance
March 18: Speaks at Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons and says all schools will be closed
March 19: Says UK can ‘turn the tide’ in fight against coronavirus within 12 weeks
March 20: Closes pubs, restaurants and theatres at press conference
March 23: Orders a UK-wide lockdown with people told to stay at home
March 25: Speaks at Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons
March 25: Speaks to Queen Elizabeth II by telephone
March 26: Holds a video call to other G20 leaders and later joins in with a national applause for NHS staff
March 27: Takes part in NHS clap for carers outside Downing Street with Chancellor Rishi Sunak
March 27: Announces in a video that he has tested positive for coronavirus
April 3: Issues video on social media urging people to stay at home during sunny weather, and also reveals he is continuing to self-isolate as he is still suffering a temperature
April 4: Carrie Symonds, the PM’s pregnant fiancée reveals she has been self-isolating at her Camberwell flat.
April 5: Mr Johnson is admitted to an NHS hospital in London for tests
April 6: No10 announce that the Prime Minister had been admitted to intensive care
April 12: Boris is discharged from St Thomas’ Hospital in central London
‘Of course it is not only me who is delighted but the whole family.
‘I am especially pleased that he will now be able to be with his fiancee Carrie, and if they head to Chequers I very much hope he doesn’t overdo it.’
He also praised the NHS for the care they gave his son.
He added: ‘I realise now – I think the whole country realises – how close he came to a crisis situation and it is wonderful he has come out of that crisis.
‘It is wonderful that the national health service was able to help him and I think he has also paid tribute to them.
‘Our thoughts are with everybody, not only those who are fighting the battle against coronavirus, but those who are suffering from it.’
Dr Ian Abbs, chief executive at Guy’s and St Thomas’, paid tribute to hospital staff.
He said: ‘It is a great credit to the exceptional professionalism of clinical teams, as well as everyone in the wider organisation, that we have been able to care for the Prime Minister so effectively, whilst continuing to deliver equally high standards of care to all of our patients.’
He said thoughts must ‘turn immediately to those who still need our help at this time’ and reiterated the plea for people to ‘stay home to help us save lives and protect the NHS’.
It comes after delivering lifesaving protective gear to frontline health staff has become ‘hand to mouth’, an NHS leader has revealed.
The Government is airlifting in crates from China on a daily basis but some are being removed from planes before take-off by officials who want to test them. Other boxes are reaching the UK only for NHS officials to discover that they have been wrongly labelled.
Rather than containing much needed protective gowns, they are filled with masks. Even worse, much of the kit from China – the world’s main supplier – is unusable because it fails UK safety checks.
The astonishing revelations come from Chris Hopson of NHS Providers, which represents hospitals, ambulance services and mental health trusts. He said: ‘It’s all been a bit hand to mouth.
The heart of the problem is that getting that stock that was ordered weeks ago from China is proving somewhat erratic.’ He said China was the only country with access to the right materials and manufacturing capacity to produce protective equipment.
More than 30 NHS staff are believed to have died from coronavirus and campaigners say some of the deaths were a direct result of a lack of personal protective equipment, or PPE.
The Royal College of Surgeons said a third of members did not have enough PPE. Protective clothing should be worn by anyone – including doctors, nurses, care home workers and paramedics – within two metres of a suspected coronavirus patient.
It includes gowns, masks, gloves and visors and is vital for preventing individuals from contracting the disease and passing it to patients or their own families. At least 30 NHS staff have died during the outbreak after testing positive although it is not known how many contracted the virus due to inadequate supplies of PPE.
Victims include Abdul Mabud Chowdhury, 53, who died in Romford, east London, last week, five days after urging Mr Johnson to make sure staff had ‘appropriate’ PPE.
Ministers claim they have delivered 761million items of protective clothing to the NHS and care homes in recent weeks but in the past few days hospitals have reported severe shortages of gowns.
Chris Hopson, whose organisation represents 217 NHS trusts with more than a million staff, said China was the world’s only supplier of these gowns, which must be water-resistant.
The extreme shortage of PPE is adding increasing strain to NHS staff across the nation, as guidelines state protective clothing should be worn by anyone – including doctors, nurses, care home workers and paramedics – within two metres of a suspected coronavirus patient
Chris Hopson (pictured speaking on the Andrew Marr show), whose organisation represents 217 NHS trusts with more than a million staff, said China was the world’s only supplier of gowns which the UK now relies upon
He said the Government had arranged daily airlifts, mostly from Shanghai, which were being overseen by the Foreign Office helped by the Department for Trade and Industry.
But explaining the logistical problems that led to these supplies being held up, he added: ‘We understand the Chinese are pulling off stocks to test them before they leave the country. So even if you’ve got the plane there, the consignment there, you can’t actually guarantee it actually gets on the plane.
‘The second issue is that when the plane arrives in the UK there have been some boxes which say on the outside gowns but actually when you open them up have masks. We also have to test all of the garments when they come over and some consignments have failed tests.
‘Everybody in the NHS is incredibly frustrated about the fact that we can’t get the supply. The reality is that it’s probably only China which has got the volume and the manufacturing capacity and access to fluid repellent material.’
Sara Trollope (pictured with Prime Minister Boris Johnson last year), 51, was just months away from retiring when she became yet another hero to been named a victim of the deadly virus
Mr Hancock said the circumstances of the deaths of NHS staff would be investigated to understand as much as possible how they caught the virus. Mr Hancock said he knew of 19 healthcare employees that had died after contracting the disease although the Mail has identified at least 32, from surgeons to doctors, nurses to porters.
He told the Downing Street press conference: ‘We are looking into each circumstance to understand as much as possible how they caught the virus, whether that’s at work, outside of work, and making sure we learn as much as we possibly can and, therefore, of course protect our health workers as much as possible.’
But he insisted it would be impossible to commit to a timescale to getting PPE to everyone who needed it, including ‘many millions of people across the NHS and social care’.
Meanwhile the Royal College of Nursing issued guidelines to members saying that if they hadn’t been given adequate PPE, they could refuse to treat patients. The recommendations state: ‘Ultimately, if you have exhausted all other measures to reduce your risk and you have not been given appropriate PPE … you are entitled to refuse to work.’
A survey by the Royal College of Surgeons found that a third of surgeons do not believe they have an adequate supply of personal protective equipment.
More than half – 57 per cent – of the 1,978 members who took part in the poll said their trust had experienced shortages within the past 30 days. One described the lack of masks as ‘scandalous’ and said he had caught the disease from a patient who had gone on to infect six other members of staff.
Abdul Mabud Chowdhury, 53, pictured left, passed away in hospital after a 15-day battle against the virus – five days after urging Mr Johnson to make sure staff had ‘appropriate’ PPE
Sue Hill, vice president of the Royal College of Surgeons, said: ‘We have been working with Government to ensure surgeons and their teams have the right advice about what level of PPE they need for different surgical procedures, but the overall picture from our survey is that there is still a lot more work to do to get adequate equipment to the front line. In the meantime we have urged our members not to risk their health, and that of their patients carrying out risky procedures.’
An NHS source said the reason Chinese officials were taking some protective clothing off the flights for testing was in case they got blamed if the shipments were found to be unsafe.
The Foreign Office is understood to be co-ordinating the flights with some input with the Department for Trade and the Department of Health. The military is not involved.
Friends of the PM previously revealed how close the Prime Minister had been to death.
New figures released by the Government today show traffic fell on Good Friday, perhaps impacted by a fall in work traffic on a bank holiday
They relayed a message from the premier who said he owed his life to the NHS medics and added: ‘I can’t thank them enough.’
Indeed, a delighted member of his family likened the recovery to a biblical resurrection, and upon hearing he had been discharged from critical care made a timely Easter allusion, saying: ‘He is risen’.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock vows ‘we won’t rest’ until all NHS medics have PPE they need
Matt Hancock vowed ‘we will not’ rest to get vital protective equipment to NHS staff today as the main nursing union told its members they could refuse to treat coronavirus patients if they felt unsafe.
The Health Secretary came under mounting pressure at the daily news conference this afternoon as he revealed that under-pressure units face on average a two-and-a-half-day wait to be restocked with personal protective equipment (PPE).
He spoke after the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) advised its members to refuse to treat coronavirus patients as ‘a last resort’ amid claims vital items like masks, goggles and gowns are still not reaching the frontlines.
A spokesman for the union admitted that with-holding treatment would ‘go against every instinct’, but added that ‘their safety must not be compromised’.
One nurse, Becky Usher, 38, who works at Dewsbury and District Hospital in West Yorkshire, remains critically ill on a ventilator after treating patients without a mask.
When asked about the supply of PPE and if the government could commit to a date to deliver more PPE, Mr Hancock said: ‘It’s impossible because the quest is to get the right PPE to the right people on the front line at the right time across many millions of people across the NHS and social care.
‘I’m glad to say that effort is moving in the right direction, we now have record amounts of PPE that’s been put out into the system but until everyone gets the PPE they need then we won’t rest.’
When ‘the boss’ was first moved into intensive care on Monday night, cabinet colleagues took to the airwaves to assure the stricken PM would pull through and hailed him a ‘fighter’.
But behind closed doors, his team of ministers and advisers exchanged private calls where they were forced to swallow the grim reality that the PM’s chances were on a knife-edge at ’50-50′.
Crushed aides who eulogise Mr Johnson as the glue binding together a tight-knit Downing Street team were even moved to prayers.
After three nail-biting nights, they finally celebrated as the physically drained but ‘euphoric’ PM was released from intensive care and moved back into a general care ward.
The hospitalisation of the country’s head of government hammered home the indiscriminate nature of the virus and shook ministers to the core.
One cabinet member told the Sunday Telegraph: ‘It took us all by surprise. We all think we’re sort of invincible.’
Devouring his Tintin books which tell the adventures of a Belgian journalist – Mr Johnson made his name as a correspondent in Brussels – the PM is thankfully on the road to recovery and is being boosted by scans of his unborn baby sent by his fiancée Carrie Symonds.
Number 10 advisers have now reportedly turned their attention to how to tell their determined boss he needs time to recover.
‘It will have been a shock and hopefully enough to convince him that he needs to take it easy,’ a source told the Sunday Times.
When Mr Johnson first began self-isolating with the disease on March 27, he had a stripped-back workload but continued taking his red box and steering the government’s crisis response.
One of his first acknowledgements that the energy-sapping disease was taking its toll came on April 2, the day before his seven-day isolation period ended, during the daily 9.15am morning coronavirus meeting.
After coughing over videolink from his Number 11 flat, Mr Johnson told his Covid-19 taskforce: ‘I’ve got it and, I can tell you, it’s a b****r this thing,’ according to the Telegraph.
When the PM was moved out of intensive care on Thursday following three days of oxygen treatment, a member of his family compared his recovery to the resurrection and remarked: ‘He is risen’, according to the Times.
The number of new coronavirus confirmed cases, split between tests administered in hospitals (blue) and drive-through centres (orange)
The global daily comparison of national death tolls
His condition was described as ‘exhausted but euphoric’, the Sun on Sunday reports.
LEADING PSYCHIATRIST SAYS VIRUS EXPERIENCE MAY LEAVE LASTING IMPRESSION ON PM
Boris Johnson has lavished praise on the NHS staff who saved his life, but one leading psychiatrist said the frightening experience of Covid-19 may still leave a lasting impression.
Professor Neil Greenberg, a member of the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the Health Protection Research Unit at King’s College London, said some people who survive a brush with death may find they have a renewed zest for life – while others may find the trauma more difficult to recover from.
‘Many people experience post traumatic growth – anything that doesn’t kill us makes us stronger,’ Prof Greenberg said.
‘Most of us in life find we go through a challenging experience; it gives us resilience and might make you more motivated and help a person go on to do a better job.
‘The most common long-term impact of traumatic events is no impact. People remain resilient.’
Prof Greenberg said people often suffer distress, poor sleep, poor concentration and nightmares in the days after a life-threatening event.
During the next few weeks these symptoms usually begin to get better by themselves although for a small minority they become more persistent.
‘A key point is how a person is supported after they come out,’ he said.
‘Good support, good colleagues, it makes it much more likely you will recover and have it as a positive resilience building intervention.
‘Whether your decisions involve running the country or running a household, if you are unwell, your mental health will clearly make a difference.
‘But it needn’t impact your ability – it might focus your mind.
‘If you look back to World War Two and Churchill, he suffered from depression, he called it his black dog but he led our country to success.
‘It would be wrong to say you can’t lead the country to success.’
The Prime Minister, who was discharged from St Thomas’ Hospital in London on Sunday, has now gone to Chequers, his county retreat, to recuperate.
Professor Greenberg said people who suffer a traumatic event should spend time with others who can provide support.
He said it was better to speak to people you trust about how frightening or distressing the experience was, rather than to avoid the subject.
‘Try and surround yourself with people who are going to be supportive and take time to speak about it,’ he said.
‘Trauma can have a more positive outcome – an experience might make a person say I’m going to be a better father or brother.
‘As a nation, assuming we come through this, I think the evidence is some people won’t remember it as well as we do now.
‘It will take a while for things to adapt – but people will adjust to the new normal.’
While in hospital, Mr Johnson has been boosted by a love letter from his fiancee, Carrie Symonds, which included a scan of their unborn child.
The Prime Minister plans to recuperate at Chequers after his release from hospital but his allies insist he will control the vital process of when – and how – Britain emerges from the lockdown.
One source told the Times: ‘Who is going to make the speeches conditioning the nation for the big decisions and lifting national morale, if not Boris?’.
Overnight, the PM’s half brother Max Johnson, 35, branded the care the premier received while self-isolating in Downing Street a ‘shambles’.
In a rare intervention, the Hong-Kong based businessman told CNN: ‘From what I gather, and I wasn’t there, no one asked a doctor to mask up and physically examine him the whole time – more than 10 days.’
‘He’d tested positive so there was no doubt what he was dealing with. The word ‘shambles’ comes to mind.’
The PM’s steady recovery came as fears grew of a surge in deaths.
The government has begged the public to stay indoors, but still this weekend police were forced to have words with people enjoying the good weather in parks.
Parks and beaches are once again filling up with people flouting lockdown rules by sunbathing – as councils have been forced to shut cemeteries to stop Easter mourners gathering to lay flowers.
Shocking pictures have shown sunbathers lounging on the grass around London including at Battersea Park.
Councils closed cemeteries ahead of Easter to stop mourners gathering and laying flowers over the Holy weekend.
Away from London, beaches are far quieter than normal Bank Holiday weekend, but a minority continue to head out for walks along the shore. It comes after the coastguard was called out to a scuba diver who was caught fishing under Brighton Pier on Saturday night.
Revellers are returning to Beachy Head after groups were seen standing on the edge of the cliff in the sunshine on Saturday.
Politicians and nurses have repeatedly pleaded with the country to stay indoors and protect the NHS, but the spring heat wave has seen a small group of people, now being referred to online as #Covidiots, ignoring advice.
It came after a top scientist said Britain could surpass the number of deaths recorded in Europe.
Sir Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, said increasing testing would ‘buy you time’ to allow the health service to deal with the crisis, and there were ‘lessons to be learned from that’.
Mr Johnson is recuperating at his official country retreat, as he takes some time off from the top job following his coronavirus battle.
The Prime Minister will spend time at the 16th century Buckinghamshire mansion, following a seven-night spell in hospital during which he said ‘things could have gone either way’.
The house and its 1,000 acre estate in the Chilterns were gifted a century ago to whoever holds the office of prime minister as a retreat from the bustle of Downing Street.
A child’s rainbow drawing is placed in the window of 10 Downing Street in London this afternoon after the PM’s discharge from hospital
A graph showing new UK cases which are reported when lab tests are completed. This may be a few days after initial testing
Transport usage continues to be at a very low level since the lockdown was imposed by the Prime Minister on March 23
Bequeathed to the nation in 1917 by Sir Arthur Lee, an MP and director-general of food production, Lloyd George became its first prime ministerial occupant in 1921.
As set out in the Chequers Estate Act 1917, it was hoped to draw the sitting PM to ‘spend two days a week in the high and pure air of the Chiltern hills and woods’.
The thinking behind that being ‘the better the health of our rulers the more sanely will they rule’.
It has been the site of many a historical moment.
Sir Winston Churchill is known to have written some of his most famous radio speeches during the Second World War in the mansion’s Hawtrey room.
Temperatures reached up to 70F in Brighton, but this group of young men in coats had to be moved off the beach on Sunday afternoon. Police were out patrolling the beachfront from the move any loiterers along
Walkers and cyclists are having trouble obeying the two metre social distancing rule while walking along the canal path at Hertford Union canal in London on Sunday
More recently, it was used by Theresa May as the location for a crunch 2018 Cabinet meeting to agree her new Brexit proposals, but in the following days senior ministers including then foreign secretary Boris Johnson resigned in disagreement over the plans.
Photographic portraits of all the British prime ministers who have used the residence are on display in the Great Parlour.
During a visit in 2015, then prime minister David Cameron told French president Francois Hollande that Chequers was ‘a good place for thinking – away from London’.
Visitors over the years have ranged from the Queen, to foreign leaders such as Russian leader Vladimir Putin and US President Donald Trump, and celebrities including Sir Elton John, Bryan Adams and David Bowie.
Since-disgraced television star Jimmy Savile made a number of visits while Margaret Thatcher was prime minister, and once claimed he spent 11 consecutive Christmases at Chequers.
It is run and managed by an independent trust and is maintained by an endowment administered by the trustees.
The Trust also receives an annual grant-in-aid from public funds towards maintenance and staffing costs – £882,000 in 2018/19.
Boris Johnson’s address to the nation in full: Prime Minister thanks NHS staff and public for staying indoors after being discharged from hospital
Boris Jonson speaks from Downing Street
On his release from St Thomas’ Hospital this afternoon, the Prime Minister addressed the nation in a video posted on Twitter. Below is the full transcript of what he said:
I have today left hospital after a week in which the NHS has saved my life, no question.
It’s hard to find the words to express my debt – but before I come to that I want to thank everyone in the entire UK for the effort and the sacrifice you have made and are making.
When the sun is out and the kids are at home; when the whole natural world seems at its loveliest and the outdoors is so inviting, I can only imagine how tough it has been to follow the rules on social distancing
I thank you because so many millions and millions of people across this country have been doing the right thing – millions going through the hardship of self-isolation – faithfully, patiently, with thought and care for others as well as for themselves.
I want you to know that this Easter Sunday I do believe that your efforts are worth it, and are daily proving their worth.
Because although we mourn every day those who are taken from us in such numbers, and though the struggle is by no means over, we are now making progress in this incredible national battle against coronavirus.
A fight we never picked against an enemy we still don’t entirely understand.
We are making progress in this national battle because the British public formed a human shield around this country’s greatest national asset – our National Health Service.
We understood and we decided that if together we could keep our NHS safe, if we could stop our NHS from being overwhelmed, then we could not be beaten, and this country would rise together and overcome this challenge, as we have overcome so many challenges in the past.
In the last seven days I have of course seen the pressure that the NHS is under.
I have seen the personal courage not just of the doctors and nurses but of everyone, the cleaners, the cooks, the health care workers of every description – physios, radiographers, pharmacists – who have kept coming to work, kept putting themselves in harm’s way, kept risking this deadly virus.
It is thanks to that courage, that devotion, that duty and that love that our NHS has been unbeatable.
I want to pay my own thanks to the utterly brilliant doctors, leaders in their fields, men and women but several of them for some reason called Nick, who took some crucial decisions a few days ago for which I will be grateful for the rest of my life.
I want to thank the many nurses, men and women, whose care has been so astonishing.
I am going to forget some names, so forgive me, but I want to thank Po Ling and Shannon and Emily and Angel and Connie and Becky and Rachael and Nicky and Ann.
And I hope they won’t mind if I mention in particular two nurses who stood by my bedside for 48 hours when things could have gone either way.
They are Jenny from New Zealand – Invercargill on the South Island to be exact – and Luis from Portugal – near Porto.
And the reason in the end my body did start to get enough oxygen was because for every second of the night they were watching and they were thinking and they were caring and making the interventions I needed.
So that is how I also know that across this country, 24 hours a day, for every second of every hour, there are hundreds of thousands of NHS staff who are acting with the same care and thought and precision as Jenny and Luis.
That is why we will defeat this coronavirus and defeat it together.
We will win because our NHS is the beating heart of this country. It is the best of this country. It is unconquerable. It is powered by love.
So thank you from me, and from all of us, to the NHS, and let’s remember to follow the rules on social distancing. Stay at home, protect our NHS – and save lives.
Thank you, and Happy Easter.