Former Health Secretary Matt Hancock confirmed this evening he tested positive for Covid-19 – seven months after stepping down after being caught kissing his married assistant in his Westminster office .
The disgraced politician took to Twitter tonight to share the news that he had tested positive for the virus and is now in self-isolation at home.
Hancock had already tested positive for Covid-19 at the start of the pandemic, in March 2020.
And seven months ago, the infamous kiss between Hancock and his assistant Gina Coladangelo violated social distancing guidelines, which he himself advocated as health secretary, forcing him to resign.
The disgraced politician took to Twitter this evening to share the news he had tested positive for the virus and is now self-isolating at home
Tweeting this evening, Mr Hancock said: ‘Yesterday afternoon I tested positive for the coronavirus.
“Since then, I isolate myself at home. Fortunately, I feel good. Much better than last time and that’s thanks to the vaccine.
At the end of his tweet, Mr Hancock added that people in Britain who have not yet received a vaccine for Covid-19 should go and get one.
“Get your booster now if you haven’t already,” he said.
Hancock previously spoke about the impact Covid-19 had on him after contracting the virus for the first time.
Seven months ago, the infamous kiss (pictured) between Hancock and his assistant Gina Coladangelo violated social distancing guidelines, which he himself advocated as health secretary, forcing him to resign
Talk to Sky News in April 2020 he said: “It’s tough, especially when you’re on the descent – it’s very worrying because we’ve all seen how bad it can get.
“I had a few days where it was really, really nasty and I lost about half a stone.”
Hancock’s positive Covid test comes seven months after his resignation as Secretary of Health after being caught by CCTV passionately kissing his married assistant Gina Coladangelo against the door of his Whitehall office in June 2021.
He lost his job when it emerged that they saw each other well with her being his helper and breaking the social distancing rules he himself had created.
Hancock, who served as Health Secretary between 2018 and 2021, first tried to weather the political storm following his violation of Covid restrictions, but ultimately resigned
Mr Hancock tried to weather the political storm because of his blatant violations of Covid-19 regulations and marital infidelity, but was ultimately forced to resign.
When asked last month on ITV’s Peston if he was surprised Boris Johnson hadn’t fired him, Mr Hancock said: ‘I’m not going to get into the conversations I’ve had with the Prime Minister.
‘I decided [to resign], it was clearly the right decision. And I’m just saying, once again sorry for the failure to … I let down a lot of people and I’m sorry for the people I hurt.
The explosive revelation of Mr Hancock’s affair with his assistant, who was married to Oliver Bonas founder Oliver Tress, forced him to resign as health secretary.
The news comes as daily Covid cases fell nearly 45% in a week today, the biggest drop since Omicron took off – as an expert has claimed the UK will be the top country in the northern hemisphere to tame the pandemic.
According to government scorecard data, 120,821 new positive tests were recorded across the country in the past 24 hours, down from the pandemic peak of 218,000 last Tuesday. This marks the sixth day in a row that infections have declined week-over-week and strongly suggests that the fourth wave fades in just over a month.
There is now growing optimism that the outbreak in the UK will follow a similar trajectory to that of South Africa, where the virus almost completely died out after becoming the epicenter of Omicron in November.
Another 379 Covid deaths were also recorded in the UK today, an increase of more than seven times from the low figure of 48 last week. Deaths are still artificially higher on Tuesday due to reporting delays at weekends, but last week’s toll was also affected by the public holiday.
At the end of his tweet this evening, Mr Hancock (file image) urged others to go for the Covid vaccine
The death rate has remained relatively stable despite Omicron pushing infection rates to record highs, and there are around five times fewer deaths now than in the second wave last January.
There are more and more calls for No10 to learn to live with Covid rather than focusing on stopping the spread of the virus now that there is such a big disconnect between infections and deaths. Final restrictions could begin to be lifted this month, it was claimed today.
The promising statistics came as Professor David Heymann, an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), suggested the UK was on the verge of beating the pandemic.
He said in an online briefing: “In general now the countries we know best in the Northern Hemisphere have different stages of the pandemic. closer to being out of the pandemic if it is not already out of the pandemic and having the disease as endemic as the other four coronaviruses.
Last Tuesday included several days of Covid cases in Northern Ireland, which will have made the weekly drop in infections artificially stronger today. But infections were still on massive decline in England and London.
Speaking at the briefing, led by the Chatham House Think Tank, Professor Heymann said population immunity was already high in the UK thanks to a combination of its highly successful vaccination program and rates infection levels.
He added: “It means immunity against serious disease and death after infection if one is vaccinated, or after re-infection if one has already had disease, and this immunity of the population seems to hold the virus and its variants at a distance, without causing serious illness or death in countries where the immunity of the population is high.
“I looked at the most recent Office for National Statistics (ONS) report on population immunity and they estimated that around 95% of the population in England and slightly less than others parts of the UK have antibodies against infection either through vaccination or natural infection.
“And that antibody, like I said, keeps the virus at bay. And it is now functioning more like an endemic coronavirus than a pandemic.