Friday, 26 Feb 2021

Coronavirus: Labour MP Kate Osborne reveals she is infected with call to ‘band together’

A second MP has revealed she has coronavirus, as parliament steps up measures to stop it spreading further.

Labour’s Kate Osborne, who represents Jarrow in the House of Commons, said she was diagnosed with COVID-19 after self-isolating and being tested.

So far 35 people with the virus in the UK have died and there are 1,372 confirmed cases.

Ms Osborne said she plans to stay self-isolating “until I have fought off the illness”.

“But in the mean time I would encourage everyone to band together and support the most vulnerable in our communities,” she urged her Twitter followers.

It comes after health minister Nadine Dorries caught coronavirus and came down with symptoms after attending a Downing Street reception last week.

Last week, Mrs Dorries revealed her 84-year-old mother has also tested positive for the virus.

Other MPs have also been self-isolating as a precaution after showing symptoms or coming into contact with those infected.

Dr Lisa Cameron, an SNP MP, told Sky News’ Sophy Ridge on Sunday via videolink it took her two hours to get through to NHS111 because the service was “totally inundated” but praised staff for doing an “amazing job”.

She said: “I think it’s difficult because the strategy and the messaging appears to have changed for people who have the symptoms.

“At first it was keep calm and carry on, it wasn’t anything to worry about, just go on as normal and then as things progressed and actually as my cough developed, that was totally different.”

Initially, anyone returning from specific regions including pockets of northern Italy was told to self-isolate for 14 days as the government tried to contain COVID-19 and stop any new transmissions inside the UK.

Then Downing Street admitted the strategy wouldn’t work on its own and escalated its response plan to try and delay the spread to make sure pressure on the NHS doesn’t come all at once amid hopes warmer weather closer to the summer will decrease infections.

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