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Michael Gove goes into coronavirus self-isolation

Now Michael Gove goes into self-isolation after family member shows symptoms of coronavirus

Michael Gove has gone into self-isolation after a family member showed symptoms of coronavirus, it was revealed today.

Aides to the Cabinet Office minister said he was following the official guidance by going into quarantine for 14 days, but was not himself feeling ill.

It is understood he plans to keep working as normal, but the news will heighten concerns about paralysis at the heart of government.

Boris Johnson was dramatically moved into intensive care last night, with concerns he faces at least weeks out of action amid the country’s biggest crisis for a generation. 

In a round of broadcast interviews from home earlier, Mr Gove said Mr Johnson was getting the ‘best care’.

‘As we speak the PM is in intensive care being looked after by his medical team receiving the very, very best care from the team in St Thomas’ and our hopes and prayers are with him and with his family,’ he told BBC Breakfast.   

He said Mr Johnson’s plight should demonstrate the need to follow social distancing rules, as the virus ‘has a malevolence that is truly frightening’. 

In a round of broadcast interviews from home earlier, Michael Gove said Mr Johnson was getting the ‘best care’

Mr Gove played down concerns that the government will be paralysed with the leader out of action, insisting that Mr Johnson had already been on a ‘stripped back diary’ for days and ‘Cabinet is the supreme decision making body’, 

However, he dodged questions about whether Mr Raab has been given crucial national security responsibilities such as control of the nuclear deterrent and military.   

New Prime Ministers usually write ‘letters of last resort’ to nuclear submarine captains, setting out instructions if government is wiped out by an enemy strike. However, it is not clear whether Mr Johnson’s letters will still apply, or Mr Raab will pen new versions.

MPs have raised alarm that hostile states such as Russia – which has already been accused of spreading disinformation about Mr Johnson’s condition – could try to exploit Britain’s ‘weakness’. 

General Sir Nick Carter, chief of the defence staff, said the armed forces ‘work straight through to the Prime Minister’, although he suggested the National Security Council (NSC) will now fill the gap. 

The Queen is being kept informed about Mr Johnson’s condition. The monarch appoints the PM, choosing the individual who is best placed to carry a majority in the Commons.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump revealed he has offered to send Mr Johnson experimental drugs to treat his coronavirus.