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U.K.'s Boris Johnson leaves hospital where he was treated for COVID-19

"On the advice of his medical team, the PM will not be immediately returning to work," a spokesperson said.
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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson left the London hospital where he was being treated for COVID-19 and returned home Sunday, Downing Street confirmed.

A spokesperson said Johnson would continue his recovery at Chequers, the prime minister's country residence in the county of Buckinghamshire, north of London.

"On the advice of his medical team, the PM will not be immediately returning to work," the spokesperson said, adding that Johnson wanted to thank London's St. Thomas Hospital, where he was treated, "for the brilliant care he has received."

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Johnson, 55, was admitted to St. Thomas' Hospital on April 5 after having experienced "persistent" symptoms of COVID-19, the disease associated with the coronavirus.

He spent three nights in the intensive care unit, where he received oxygen treatment but did not need to be put on a ventilator. The sudden deterioration of his health jolted some Britons and sparked concern for his well-being and the country's leadership during the pandemic.

Johnson left intensive care, returning to a regular ward, on Thursday and was said to have been in "good spirits," sitting up in bed and later taking short walks.

The prime minister also thanked the National Health Service for the "brilliant care" he had received.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has been standing in for Johnson while he was being treated, and the prime minister will likely face pressure to confirm when lockdown measures in Britain — in place since March 23 — may be eased.

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Johnson was last seen in public clapping for National Health Service workers in Downing Street before his admission to the hospital as part of a weekly clap-for-carers campaign.

His pregnant partner, Carrie Symonds, 32, has previously said on Twitter that she had recovered from corona-like symptoms despite not having been tested.

Johnson announced his positive test results March 27 in a video online, saying that his symptoms were mild and that he was self-isolating. The prime minister had previously insisted that the United Kingdom should continue to follow social distancing measures and the advice of public health officials.

Deaths from the coronavirus have continued to mount in Britain. As of Sunday, 9,875 deaths in U.K. hospitals have been recorded among more than 78,000 confirmed cases.