U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson out of intensive care as recovery continues

Johnson, 55, was admitted to London's St Thomas' Hospital on Sunday after "persistent" COVID-19 symptoms.
/ Source: NBC News

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been moved out of the intensive care unit where he was being treated for the coronavirus, a spokesperson said Thursday.

"The prime minister has been moved this evening from intensive care back to the ward, where he will receive close monitoring during the early phase of his recovery," the spokesperson said. "He is in extremely good spirits."

Johnson, 55, was admitted to London’s St. Thomas' Hospital on Sunday after "persistent" COVID-19 symptoms. He was moved into intensive care the next day.

It was later revealed that he had received oxygen treatment but not need to be put on a ventilator, On Wednesday, a spokesperson said he was well enough to sit up in bed and communicate with his medical team.

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Before Johnson was moved out of ICU, a spokesperson said he had had a "good night" and thanked the U.K.'s National Health Service for the "brilliant care" he had received.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab had been deputized to stand in for Johnson while he has been treated.

At a coronavirus briefing Thursday, Raab said he had not spoken to the prime minister, who he insisted should focus on his recovery.

Raab added that he had "got all the authority I need" to take decisions along with his government colleagues.

Johnson was last seen in public clapping for NHS workers in Downing Street last Thursday before his admission to hospital three days later.

His pregnant partner, Carrie Symonds, said on Twitter Saturday that she was in recovery after a week of being bedridden with symptoms. She added that she had not been tested for the virus.

Johnson announced his positive test results March 27 on Twitter, saying his symptoms were mild and he was self-isolating. The prime minister insisted that the United Kingdom continue to follow social distancing measures and the advice of public health officials.

"The more effectively we all comply with those measures, the faster our country can come through this epidemic and the faster we will bounce back," Johnson said last month.

As of Thursday, a total of 65,077 cases have been recorded in the U.K. and 7,978 have died.