I clapped the NHS ‘like crazy’ from my hospital window wearing nothing but my boxer shorts, reveals Boris Johnson


The PM said that from his window at St Thomas’ Hospital he saw the police at nearby Scotland Yard doing their weekly clap for doctors, nurses and other NHS staff.

Boris Johnson has revealed he clapped for the NHS while wearing only his boxer shorts while he was in hospital
The PM was treated at St Thomas’ Hospital in London after struggling to overcome coronavirus

He added: “It was a Thursday when I came out of ICU and with me I had a nurse called Becky and a nurse called, I think, Angel.

“I was just in my boxers, nothing else.

“We stood up and there was this big window looking out on the Thames and we saw the Met and the Fire Brigade do this display with their boats.

“It was just fantastic. And we clapped like crazy for the NHS and for care workers.”

Mr Johnson spoke movingly of his enormous debt to the professionalism and dedication of NHS staff.

He said: “I owe my life to our doctors and nurses and the healthcare workers.

“They pulled my chestnuts out of the fire, no question.”

The PM told of his overwhelming feeling of relief when at around 6pm on April 9 he was wheeled out of intensive care after winning his personal battle with coronavirus — and back on to a general ward.

He said: “It was an amazing moment.

“They clapped me out of the bit I was in.

“It’s something they have done for many patients — but it is really the doctors and nurses who deserve it most.”

Mr Johnson was to spend another three nights in St Thomas’ before he was allowed home to recuperate.

He said: “I was fantastically lucky.

“It certainly gave me a really good understanding of the disease and what goes on and how you tackle it.”

Throughout his exclusive interview with HOAR, Mr Johnson constantly referred to how fortunate he had been compared to very many others who got the virus.

He said: “I saw a lot of victims both going in and going out.

“I felt so lucky by comparison.

“I am lucky because so many people have suffered so much.

“I want to stress this. So many people have suffered so much more than I did.

“There are people that I know well who are still on ventilation, who are still in comas.

“There are so many who have suffered, so many families who are still facing huge anxiety, so many who have lost loved ones.

“So if you ask me, am I driven by a desire to stop other people suffering? Yes, I absolutely am.

“But I am also driven by an overwhelming desire to get our country as a whole back on its feet, healthy again, going forward.

“And I’m very confident that we’ll get there.”

Boris Johnson spoke exclusively to HOAR on Sunday’s Political Editor, David Wooding

The Prime Minister claps for carers at No10 on April 30

‘I’m afraid there is more sacrifice and there is certainly a huge amount more effort we must go through’, Boris said

The PM said of his time in intensive care: ‘I just couldn’t see the way out of the skip’
‘I suppose there was some natural buoyancy or refusal to give in or harbour negative thoughts’, the PM said

And the PM warned that despite the UK getting past the peak of virus infection, the battle is not yet won.

He stressed: “We’re not there yet. I’m not saying that day won’t eventually come — but we’re not there yet.

“There is more struggle, I’m afraid there is more sacrifice and there is certainly a huge amount more effort we must go through.”

Boris said that during his time in intensive care it was the thoughts of his loved ones that gave him the determination to battle on.

He added: “I was deeply frustrated that I couldn’t see the path to . . . do you know what I mean?

“I just couldn’t see the way out of the skip.”

But the PM said he never for a moment thought he would not pull through.

He added: “I suppose there was some natural buoyancy or refusal to give in or harbour negative thoughts.

“I never really thought that I wouldn’t come back from it. It was more frustration.”

Barely three weeks after surviving his brush with Covid-19 he was back in a hospital for a happier occasion — to witness the birth of his and girlfriend Carrie Symonds’ son, Wilfred Lawrie Nicholas.

Mr Johnson said: “What I can say is that I’ve seen the NHS save life and I’ve seen the NHS bring new life into the world in the last month.

“My love and admiration for that institution is boundless, that’s all I’ll say.”

His face lights up when he is asked about his new son.

He said simply: “I’m thrilled.”

Mr Johnson was also full of praise for Pat O’Brien, the consultant obstetrician who delivered Wilfred at University College London Hospital.

He said: “He’s a great man, a great man. He’s also a very nice man.”

One of Wilfred’s middle names, Nicholas, is a tribute to specialists Dr Nicholas Price and Professor Nicholas Hart, who helped saved Boris’s life in intensive care.

Mr Johnson told how the trip to the maternity unit where Wilfred was born gave him a grim reminder of the sacrifices made by NHS staff.

Boris speaks of his love for his and Carrie Symonds’ son, Wilfred Lawrie Nicholas Johnson
Boris told of how thoughts of his loved ones, including fiancee Carrie, kept him going during his battle with coronavirus
The PM has postponed his paternity leave to lead the battle against the coronavirus

Four of the ten security guards at the unit have died as a result of coronavirus in the past few weeks.

Boris said he is still baffled over how he got the infection — although there has been speculation that aides who were attending Brexit talks picked it up from EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier.

Mr Barnier went down with the virus in mid-March.

One official has joked that it might have been “a parting gift” from Mr Barnier.

Mr Johnson last week returned to St Thomas’ for tests to monitor his recovery.

He said it was “touching” to again meet some of the staff who had cared for him.

He added: “It was a nice moment and, God, they do an incredible job. But it’s not just the nurses and the doctors — it’s everybody. It’s the cleaners, it’s the cooks, it’s the physios, it’s the pharmacists.”

The PM said he owes it to the whole nation and NHS staff in particular to defeat coronavirus.

He said: “This government is on an absolute mission to beat this disease. And we’re sure we can.”


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