The Government is going to stop giving people daily updates of where new coronavirus cases are

James Morris
Senior news reporter, Yahoo News UK
A woman wears a mask as a precaution against coronavirus in London (Ilyas Tayfun Salci/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

The government will no longer publish daily updates about the locations of new coronavirus cases in the UK.

It comes after the number of cases jumped by 34 in one day to 85.

Previously, the Department of Health was publishing one daily update detailing where the patients who have tested positive come from.

However, with the number of cases growing, the department said in a statement on Wednesday that this will now be weekly: “As of today, due to the number of new cases, we will no longer be tweeting information on the location of each new case.

“Instead, this information will be released centrally in a consolidated format online, once a week. We are working on this now and plan to share on Friday.”

Dozens of Twitter users reacted furiously to the announcement.

“That's an absolute joke,” wrote one, “it's a public health emergency and you're not releasing vital information.”

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Another wrote: “You have a duty of care to provide the public with as much information as you can to enable us to make our own decisions regarding risk.”

Wednesday’s increase in coronavirus cases was the biggest day-on-day jump, with England’s chief medical officer, Prof Chris Whitty, having warned a UK epidemic is looking “likely”.

Three of the 29 new cases in England were passed on in the UK, raising fears that community transmission may now be taking hold.

Coronavirus: Affected workers will receive sick pay from day one

Boris Johnson had earlier announced new sick pay changes as part of emergency coronavirus legislation, so that anyone self-isolating is paid from day one rather than day four, as current rules state.

The prime minister told MPs that people who self-isolate are “helping to protect all of us by slowing the spread of the virus”.

He added: “If they stay at home and if we ask people to self-isolate, they may lose out financially.

Read more: Italy 'considering closing all schools and universities until mid-March'

“So, I can today announce that the health secretary will bring forward, as part of our emergency coronavirus legislation, measures to allow the payment of statutory sick pay from the very first day you are sick instead of four days under the current rules, and I think that’s the right way forward.

“Nobody should be penalised for doing the right thing.”

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