The consultation between the prime minister and his personal doctor took place on Sunday afternoon through a video conference. Earlier in the day, Mr Johnson had chaired a cabinet meeting via video link, that was attended by senior colleagues, including the Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove, the Chancellor Rishi Sunak, the Health Secretary Matt Hancock and the Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab. To all those present, the prime minister’s appearance was a cause of serious concern.
It was clear to everyone that Mr Johnson’s health had significantly deteriorated since his appearance in a video on Friday, where he appealed to the public to observe social distancing guidelines.
The prime minister looked pale and exhausted and to some he also appeared to be having breathing difficulties.
As a senior Whitehall source told the Daily Mail: “His symptoms were persisting.
“He was plainly not getting better. In fact he’d got worse.”
BORIS JOHNSON was told in no uncertain terms by his GP
It was clear to everyone that Mr Johnson’s health had significantly deteriorated
Since his diagnosis for COVID-19 over 10 days ago, the prime minister has been determined to lead the government’s fight against the coronavirus outbreak, ignoring both medical and friends’ advice to rest.
He doggedly persisted in continuing his work and chairing meetings via video link, while quarantined in his apartment at number 11 Downing Street.
On one occasion he read the riot act to both civil servants and ministers over last week’s testing fiasco, when government information was both inaccurate and confusing.
Mr Johnson’s cabinet colleagues were so concerned after their meeting on Sunday, that once again they urged him to seek fresh medical advice.
The Prime Minister, though, insisted it was nothing, just a minor temperature and that there was much important work to be done.
Mr Johnson then went for a walk in the Downing Street garden, but his health started to decline rapidly.
He was coughing and finding it ever more difficult to breathe, whereupon he agreed to consult a doctor if he did not feel any better after short nap.
Feeling no better after his short sleep, the prime minister spoke to his GP via video link, who literally ordered the reluctant Mr Johnson to go to hospital as a matter of urgency.
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The prime minister has asked foreign secretary Dominic Raab
Earlier in the day Mr Johnson had chaired a cabinet meeting via video link
After a brief argument with his officials, Mr Johnson packed an overnight bag and drove the short distance to St Thomas Hospital in the company of his bodyguards.
As he was making his way, the Queen delivered her address to the nation, which Mr Johnson had been intimately involved in helping to draft.
A source told the Daily Mail: “’It’s been admirable the way he’s wanted to carry on with the job, leading from the front, and making sure he is on top of every decision.
But in the end he’s not done his health any good. He has to give in to the virus and rest.”
During the course of Monday the condition of the 56-year-old prime minister continued to worsen, eventually leading to the decision to place him in an Intensive Care Unit at 7pm.
The prime minister remains conscious but was taken to the ward in case he later needs ventilation.
The Prime Minister, though, insisted it was nothing
A spokesperson for Number 10 said: “Over the course of this afternoon, the condition of the prime minister has worsened and, on the advice of his medical team, he has been moved to the intensive care unit at the hospital.
“The prime minister has asked foreign secretary Dominic Raab, who is the first secretary of state, to deputise for him where necessary.
“The PM is receiving excellent care, and thanks all NHS staff for their hard work and dedication.”