Ministers urged employers to prepare for mass absences of staff as the coronavirus strengthens and makes headway across the world. It comes as an additional 12 people tested positive for the virus on Tuesday, bringing the UK’s total number of those infected to 51.
The worse case scenario figures would mean more than six million people being off work at any one time.
It has led the government to draw up several contingency plans, including a “battle plan” published by the government.
The plan includes how firms around the UK could be encouraged to allow staff to work from home if the virus takes hold.
The main intention of this would be to contain and limit the virus’ spread.
In addition to the advice, police may also need to focus their efforts on the most serious crimes and maintaining order – with support from the military also said to be in the pipeline should things take a turn for the worse.
Out of all the cases in the UK, 12 people have recovered.
The Prime Minister has warned that is is “highly likely” the UK will see further infection, and that the next steps from the government would focus efforts on stopping the spread of the virus.
This comes in stark contrast to US President Donald Trump’s rhetoric after he claimed the US was leading the way in creating a vaccine to the virus.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock urged people to “act on official medical advice” after admitting that widespread transmission of the virus across the UK was becoming “more likely”.
The 12 new cases in the UK were largely spread across the UK from the south to the north.
The patients are from London, Hampshire, Northamptonshire, Bury, Wirral, Greater Manchester and Hull.
Consultancy firm Deloitte said one of its employees had tested positive for the virus after returning form Asia.
As a result, one of the firms floors in its Holborn building.
Brits abroad have also tested positive for the virus.
A woman has been diagnosed in a hotel in Tenerife that was hit by an outbreak of the virus let week.
In all, around 90,000 people have been infected since the outbreak of coronavirus which was initially reported in early in January.
There are cases in more than 60 countries and more than 3,000 deaths.
Last week, a British man who was infected on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan became the first UK citizen to die from the virus.
Published at Wed, 04 Mar 2020 05:16:00 +0000