Boris Johnson has tested positive for coronavirus
The prime minster, 55, tweeted a video message confirming he has COVID-19, adding: “Over the last 24 hours I have developed mild symptoms and tested positive for coronavirus.
“I am now self-isolating, but I will continue to lead the government’s response via video-conference as we fight this virus.
Downing Street said Mr Johnson had been tested on the advice of his chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty, having been experiencing “mild symptoms” on Thursday.
“The test was carried out in No 10 by NHS staff and the result of the test was positive,” the statement added.
“In keeping with the guidance, the Prime Minister is self-isolating in Downing Street.
“He is continuing to lead the government’s response to coronavirus.”
Mr Johnson, whose partner Carrie Symonds is pregnant, was last seen outside Number 10 on Thursday night, joining Chancellor Rishi Sunak as part of a nationwide applause for NHS workers as they battle the pandemic.
He also appeared at PMQs as normal on Wednesday, sat in a gap between his Home Secretary Priti Patel and Chief Whip Mark Spencer with a gap.
Mr Johnson’s spokesman confirmed a few days ago that Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab would stand in if he becomes unwell.
If Mr Raab is also ill, the prime minister has the power to delegate responsibility to any of his ministers, the spokesman added.
Ian Blackford, the SNP’s Westminster leader, wished Mr Johnson a speedy recovery.
“This sadly shows nobody is immune,” he said. “Everybody must follow the advise on social distancing, non-essential work must not take place. We need to take all measures to isolate if need be.”