Matt Hancock, Health Secretary

The Health Secretary says the risk of coronavirus is “accelerating rapidly” and is appealing for hundreds of thousands of volunteers to support NHS staff across the country – including on the Isle of Wight.

250,000 NHS volunteers are needed to help workers in the health sector by delivering medicines, shopping and support “those who are shielded to protect their own health”.

Final year medics and student nurses will also move on to the frontline, to ensure we have the people we need to respond to this crisis – according to Matt Hancock.

Meanwhile, a new temporary hospital, the NHS Nightingale Hospital will open at the ExCel Centre, Royal Victoria Dock, London. It will have two wards, each with capacity for two thousand people.

It comes as the UK has seen its biggest number of people with coronavirus die in a day. 87 more have been reported in the last 24 hours – taking the total so far to 422.

The Health Secretary praised the efforts of those on the front line and promised to keep them safe, to allow them to keep us safe.

Matt Hancock reiterated for us to “stay at home” and said earlier the measures in place are “not advice, they are rules” and there are only four reasons you can leave home.

Public Health England says you can only go out when necessary for food, medicine, work or exercise.

An initial £30 fine is likely to be issued for people who leave their homes without one of these causes.

Posting on Twitter NHS England urges volunteers to come forward:


Get the latest advice for the Isle of Wight and news here.

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