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Coronavirus map LIVE: Boris Johnson issues first orders from Chequers as he recovers

According to reports from The Sunday Telegraph, Mr Johnson has issued orders to the First Secretary of State, Dominic Raab, who has been deputising for the Prime Minister since he fell seriously ill with the disease. Mr Johnson is currently convalescing in Chequers, the country manor house of the Prime Minister, until he is fit to return to work. However, he reportedly conducted a three hour meeting with the Foreign Secretary on Friday to lay out orders for the Government. 

Among the issues on the top of the agenda is the supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) to NHS and social care staff.

Medical professionals have recently cried out to the Government for more assistance, with a national shortage in PPE set to potentially cripple the healthcare sector.

In an effort to keep rein on the issue, Downing Street have announced Lord Deighton, the former Olympics chief, has been appointed to a senior role in producing and procuring PPE in the UK.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has likened Lord Deighton’s role to that of Lord Beaverbrook – who led a surge in the wartime effort to build aircraft. 

It is understood the Prime Minister has ordered his senior aides to focus on preventing a second peak of the COVID-19 outbreak across Britain. 

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In other coronavirus developments

  • Britain is hoping to spearhead the race for a COVID-19 vaccine as the UK announced a new taskforce and drugs trials.
  • NHS staff could be forced to walk out of their jobs on the frontline if not enough PPE is provided.
  • Captain Tom Moore has been recognised by the Government by being made the guest of honour at the opening of a Nightingale Hospital.
  • Investigations have revealed how Britain ‘sleepwalked into disaster’ concerning the virus after the Prime Minister skipped Cobra meetings, and calls to order protective gear were ignored.
  • Deaths from coronavirus in the UK jumped by 888 to 15,464 in a Department of Health announcement yesterday.

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7.50am update: China reports record fall in COVID-19 cases, but potential second wave

China has reported 16 new confirmed cases of the coronavirus, the lowest number since March 17, and down from 27 a day earlier according to data.

However, authorities are currently keeping an eye on the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, after a surge in infections there.

Returns from Russia to the province have created a flare-up in local cases which could create a second wave of the deadly disease. 

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