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Mr Johnson, who spent three nights in intensive care after contracting the disease in March, could be sidelined for another fortnight if Mr Sharma, pictured sweating and looking ill in Parliament yesterday, turns out to be infected. The Prime Minister’s official spokesman confirmed the PM and Chancellor Rishi Sunak had held a 45-minute socially distanced meeting on the economy with Mr Sharma on Tuesday. The spokesman said Mr Johnson would follow medical advice if spoken to by contact tracers, who will begin their work if Mr Sharma’s test for COVID-19 comes back positive.
Downing Street said the Government was not reconsidering its move to end virtual voting in the Commons, despite the Business Secretary appearing visibly ill in the chamber on Wednesday.
The spokesman said: “He does not yet have his test results.
“Should the Secretary of State receive a positive test then he will work with the test and trace service to share information about his recent interactions.
“He did attend a meeting in No 10, which took place before Cabinet. That was a discussion on the economy and in terms of who was present, it was the Prime Minister, the Chancellor and the Business Secretary.”
He stressed the meeting took place with two-metre distancing in place and pointed towards the Government guidelines on how the tracers operate, which include asking individuals whether they had been to a workplace recently.
The spokesman confirmed that even those who have had Covid-19 must isolate and, when pressed on whether the PM would self-isolate if told to, he said: “I would expect us to take medical advice and to follow it.”
Parliament was deep-cleaned after the incident involving Mr Sharma, which came the day after MPs were required to vote in person at the House of Commons, resulting in lengthy queues in which was quickly dubbed the “Rees-Mogg Conga” in reference to Jacob Rees-Mogg, leader of the House of Commons.
(More to follow)
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