Coronavirus UK latest news live: Scotland’s death toll rises to 615

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Coronavirus UK latest news live: Scotland's death toll rises to 615
Coronavirus UK latest news live: Scotland's death toll rises to 615

Downing Street has said Boris Johnson was continuing his recovery at Chequers and was not involved in making decisions, taking phone calls or receiving official papers in his ministerial red boxes.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “The priority is for the PM to rest and recover and his medical team have advised him not to immediately return to work.”

It comes as his chief aide, Dominic Cummings, returned to work in Downing Street after recovering from coronavirus symptoms.

Number 10 was questioned about why Mr Cummings did not appear to be maintaining a two-metre gap from fellow aide Cleo Watson.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “He is back in Number 10 and working today.”

The spokesman said “everybody in Number 10 continues to practice social distancing, which means staying two metres apart wherever possible”.

– An NHS boss has said a new Nightingale Hospital being built in the North East of England will not need to open if people maintain social distancing rules.

Workers have transformed an empty unit close to the Nissan car plant into a 460-bed facility which could be ready to take patients at the end of the month.

But the Nightingale Hospital in Washington, Tyne and Wear, will only open to patients if hospitals in the North East are unable to cope with the influx of coronavirus patients.

Martin Wilson, chief operating officer for Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which is overseeing the project, said he does not think that will happen.

“I don’t think we will need to open,” he said. “If people can all play their part in social distancing, if a vaccine comes along, my hope is that we don’t need to open. If we do, we will be ready.”

– Drones could be used to deliver coronavirus test kits and PPE for the NHS, as the UK Space Agency has been tasked with finding ways to combat the spread of virus and prevent future epidemics.

An initial £2.6 million funding pot will be made available to firms to use satellite data and drone technology to tackle problems, such as delivering vital equipment and managing infectious disease outbreaks.

The money is part of a joint initiative by the UK Space Agency and the European Space Agency.

– A total of 615 patients have died in Scotland after testing positive for coronavirus, up by 40 from 575 on Monday, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said.

She said 6,358 people have now tested positive for the virus in Scotland, up by 291 from 6,067 the day before.

There are 196 people in intensive care with coronavirus or coronavirus symptoms, a decrease of 15 on Monday, she added.

And 1,798 people are in hospital with confirmed or suspected Covid-19.

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