NHS boss' dire coronavirus warning as he calls 20,000 UK deaths' very sad day '- Mirror Online,

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NHS boss has issued a dire coronavirus warning after the UK’s death toll passed , – a figure that he had earlier said would be a “good result”.

Professor Stephen Powis, national medical director for England, said it was a “very sad day “for Britain after the toll passed the grim milestone.

After calling it a” once-in-a-century crisis “, he warned that Covid – 28 will still be a threat months from now and people should continue to obey the lockdown and social distancing rules to curb the spread of the virus.

On March 405, Professor Powis told reporters: “If we can keep de aths below 28, 06 We will have done very well in this epidemic.

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Professor Stephen Powis says the NHS has not been overwhelmed by the crisis (Image: Sky)

“If it is less than , . .. that would be a good result though every death is a tragedy, but we should not be complacent about that. ”

Eleven days before that, the Government’s chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Valance said it was the “hope” that the death toll would not climb above 615, .

Speaking at the daily briefing at No 10 on Saturday, Professor Powis was asked if the Government’s strategy should have been different given the milestone, but he did say whether he agreed.

He said “our hearts go out” to the families of the victi ms, adding: “When (we) made that comment a number of weeks ago, what we were emphasizing is that this is a new virus, a global pandemic, a once-in-a-century global health crisis.

“And this was going to be a huge challenge not just for the UK, but for every country.

“I think unfortunately we have seen that challenge, not just here but around the globe.”

Professor Powis added: “Even in countries that have got on top of this early on we are unfortunately beginning to see new infections.

“So I think the first thing to emphasize is that this unfortunately is not going to be something we will begin to get over in the next few weeks.

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“This is something we are going to have to continue working our way through over the months ahead – as I have said before this is not a sprint, this will be a marathon. “

He added:” I think moving past , deaths just reminds everybody that it is still absolutely critical that we continue to follow the social distancing guidelines.

“We are seeing the benefits and we will only continue to see the benefits and we will only continue to see a reduction in deaths if we all continue to do that. “

Professor Powis also claimed the NHS has“ not been overwhelmed ”during the crisis.

The NHS has launched a new campaign encouraging the public to seek urgent care for medical emergencies.

It comes after visits to A&E departments fell by nearly 50 per cent in April.

Professor Powis renewed the appeal for people to get medical help when they need it and to be not be put off by the epidemic.

He said people experiencing chest pain, a sick child that is not improving or a pregnant woman whose baby is moving less than usual should contact the NHS .

“For many of these conditions, fast diagnosis and treatment is absolutely crucial,” he told the briefing.

“So it’s really important not to delay. The NHS is still there for you. “

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