Londoners told to pay particular attention to government advice as spread of virus “ahead” of rest of country

The UK prime minister has told Londoners to pay particular attention to government advice as the spread of the virus in the capital is “a few weeks ahead” of other parts of the country.

It comes after a live televised speech this afternoon between Boris Johnson and his chief advisers.

The advice includes to avoid non-essential travel and to stay home for 14 days if living with or come into contact with anyone with a cough.

Other advice is to avoid public establishments and to work from home if possible.

Sir Patrick Vallance, the government’s chief scientific adviser, told the news conference the UK was around three weeks behind Italy, which has been put into lockdown, in terms of the spread of coronavirus.

Figures released on Sunday show 35 people in the UK diagnosed with COVID-19 have died.

A government bill on emergency powers to deal with the coronavirus outbreak is to be set out tomorrow and published on Thursday.

It could include giving police powers to arrest and forcibly quarantine people who are sick with the virus but are not self-isolating.

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