PRIME Minister Boris Johnson was on Thursday taken out of intensive care in a sign he is winning his coronavirus battle.

Johnson, who has been in hospital since Sunday, spent three nights in a high-dependency unit at St Thomas’s Hospital in central London after his condition deteriorated.

The announcement came just hours after Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, who has been standing in for him while he was incapacitated, said he was making ‘positive  steps forward’ in his treatment.

This evening, a No 10 spokesman said: “The Prime Minister has been moved this evening from intensive care back to the ward, where he will receive close monitoring during the early phase of his recovery. He is in extremely good spirits.”

The daily high of 938 deaths took Britain’s total to more than 7,000.

The health ministry said the total of confirmed infections rose to nearly 61,000 from 282,000 people tested, but government experts estimated that many hundreds of thousands of people were infected.

Many health experts have criticised the government’s slow response to the crisis, the low level of testing for the virus and the poor provision of intensive care beds, ventilators and protective equipment.

In London, buses began introducing stricter measures to protect drivers and other staff from possible infection with the coronavirus on Wednesday, following the death of at least nine drivers in the city.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said the city would introduce measures including protective screens for drivers, enhanced cleaning, restricting passengers to boarding only through middle doors and increasing social distancing.

The nine drivers were among 14 London transport staff who died after becoming infected with coronavirus.

Police in one of Britain’s largest cities yesterday urged the public to observe a near-lockdown to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, after breaking up 660 parties in just four days.

Greater Manchester Police said they were concerned that more people might ignore the lockdown during the four-day Easter holiday weekend, when fine weather is forecast.

The force said it recorded a “sharp increase’’ to 1,132 reported breaches of the lockdown from Saturday to Tuesday.

The breaches included 494 house parties and 166 street parties, as well as dozens of sports events and other gatherings in parks.

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