London [UK], Mar 29 (ANI): British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who has self-isolated after testing positive for coronavirus last week, wrote to every household in the United Kingdom, urging people to stay at home in a bid to contain the spread of the contagious infection.
"We know things will get worse before they get better," Johnson wrote in his letter, addressing the 30 million households across the United Kingdom.
"But we are making the right preparations, and the more we all follow the rules, the fewer lives will be lost and the sooner life can return to normal," read the letter posted on the prime minister's Instagram page.
According to British media reports, the country has reported over 17,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and more than 1,000 deaths.
The British government ramped up its response to coronavirus in the past week, ordering pubs, cafes, restaurants and shops to close and making social distancing compulsory.
"I understand completely the difficulties this disruption has caused to your lives, businesses and jobs. But the action we have taken is absolutely necessary, for one very simple reason. We must slow the spread of the disease, and reduce the number of people needing hospital treatment in order to save as many lives as possible," the prime minister said.
He also ordered the people to not to meet friars or relatives, only leave the home for very limited purposes, such as buying food and medicine, exercising once a day and seeking medical attention. "You can travel to and from work but should work from home if you can," Johnson said.
In his letter, he will thank all those working for the state-funded National Health Service (NHS), which provides free healthcare to everyone living in the United Kingdom and inspires huge respect across society.
"It has been truly inspirational to see our doctors, nurses and other carers rise magnificently to the needs of the hour," Johnson said.
"That is why, at this moment of national emergency, I urge you, please, to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives," the letter added.
Johnson, who has described his symptoms as mild, is leading the government's response to the crisis, chairing meetings by video conference.
The health minister, Matt Hancock, has also tested positive and is working from home. (ANI)