What time is today's coronavirus press briefing on Friday, and who is speaking?

A SENIOR member of the Government will today (May 22) address the country as part of the daily coronavirus briefings at 5pm. 

The press conferences aim to inform the public on decisions being taken by the Government to combat the coronavirus pandemic.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

What time is the briefing?

The briefing will be held today (May 22) at 5pm at 10 Downing Street.

Since March 16, the Government has held these meetings on a daily basis.

In the briefings, officials reveal the latest on the coronavirus pandemic.

Who is speaking?

It's been reported today that Home Secretary Priti Patel will be speaking but this has yet to be confirmed by Downing Street.

She will be joined by experts from the world of science and health who will update the nation with slides on the latest coronavirus developments.

How can I watch it?

The press conference briefings are broadcast live by the BBC at 5pm.

You can also watch the live broadcast on the Government's official YouTube page.

We can also keep you up to date on what is being said at the press conference by following our coronavirus live blog, for live updates on the briefing.

What was said on Thursday's press conference?

Yesterday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock was joined by Professor Chris Whitty and Professor John Newton opened the briefing by commenting on Mental Health.

They revealed during the briefing the Government are giving £4.2m in funds to charities like the Samaritans, Young Minds and Mental Health UK.

Meanwhile, health and care workers have been given a bespoke service to get any help or advice they might need during this time by texting "FRONTLINE" to 85258.

After the news that the UK death toll rose to 36,042, the Health Secretary also said he will back any new and innovative ideas among those is a swab test from OptiGene, which is currently being trialed.

Hancock revealed this trial is time effective as it does not need to go off to a lab, and is suspected to provide results in 20 minutes.

He went on to talk about antibody tests further and said that they are NOT sure whether those that test positive on the antibody tests are immune to coronavirus.

Antibody tests from Roche Diagnostics and Abbott Labs have been given a positive evaluation by Public Health England and approved by MHRA, with three further tests being currently assessed as well.

Mr Hancock closed the briefing by revealing that contracts have been signed to provide over 10 million tests from Roche and Abbott in the coming months.

The roll-out of these tests will start next week, with health and care staff, patients, and residents receiving the first batch.

Each nation in the UK will be given a set amount for which it will be able to decide who gets them.


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