Boris Johnson claims doctors were ‘preparing to announce his death’ over coronavirus

PUBLISHED: 09:57 03 May 2020 | UPDATED: 09:57 03 May 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson in his office in No10 Downing Street with all his get well soon cards sent in by children while he was ill with the coronavirus. Photograph: Andrew Parsons/10 Downing Street/Crown Copyright/PA Wire.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson in his office in No10 Downing Street with all his get well soon cards sent in by children while he was ill with the coronavirus. Photograph: Andrew Parsons/10 Downing Street/Crown Copyright/PA Wire.

Doctors treating Boris Johnson were preparing to announce his death, the prime minister has told a Sunday newspaper.

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Johnson spent three nights in intensive care at St Thomas’ in London with the disease, where he said medics gave him “litres and litres of oxygen”.

He described it as a “tough old moment”, telling the Sun On Sunday: “They had a strategy to deal with a ‘death of Stalin’-type scenario.

“I was not in particularly brilliant shape and I was aware there were contingency plans in place.

“The doctors had all sorts of arrangements for what to do if things went badly wrong.


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“They gave me a face mask so I got litres and litres of oxygen and for a long time I had that and the little nose jobbie.”

Johnson, 55, said it was “hard to believe” his health had deteriorated in just a few days, saying he “couldn’t understand why I wasn’t getting better”.

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The PM told the paper the “indicators kept going in the wrong direction” and that he kept asking himself: “How am I going to get out of this?”

“The bad moment came when it was 50-50 whether they were going to have to put a tube down my windpipe.

“That was when it got a bit ... they were starting to think about how to handle it presentationally.”

He said he was “in denial” initially about how serious his illness was, and that doctors were right to “force” him to go to hospital.

After a fortnight convalescing from the virus, and just two days after he returned to work full-time, his fiancee Carrie Symonds gave birth to their son, Wilfred Lawrie Nicholas Johnson.

They named him after their grandfathers, and two doctors - Dr Nick Price and Prof Nick Hart - who helped save Johnson’s life.

The front page story came as former Downing Street director of communications Alastair Campbell slammed the newspaper for focusing on Boris Johnson over the thousands of coronavirus deaths.

He told talkRADIO: “How can your paper say on a day where more than 800 died is a good Friday...how can you say that because one guy left hospital?”

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