A first case of coronavirus in Waltham Forest has been confirmed.

Yesterday, the council revealed a resident had contracted the Covid-19 virus.

The latest figures show there are now 319 confirmed coronavirus cases in the UK

It is believed the Waltham Forest resident contracted the virus at an event outside of the borough.

Council officials say they are “not aware of community transmission within the borough.”

In response, Waltham Forest Trades Council (WFTC) - a worker's rights campaign group - is calling for action by government, employers and trade unions in support of those likely to be affected during the outbreak.

Linda Taaffe, secretary at WFTC, said: “Our delegates are concerned that the unions must be seen to be at the forefront of ensuring that workers do not lose out financially by having to isolate; that firms are not allowed to bump up prices due to shortages; and that the historical under-funding and years of privatisation in the health service are laid at the door of successive Tory governments. At a meeting of our trades council we unanimously adopted an emergency motion on the coronavirus.”

The news of the borough's first confirmed case came as England's chief medical officer professor Chris Whitty pointed to tighter measures aimed at protecting the public, particularly the vulnerable and elderly, which could be implemented in the next 10 to 14 days.

Britons with "minor" cold, flu or fever symptoms could soon to be asked to stay at home in self-isolation in a bid to tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

The Government has also tightened travel restrictions on coronavirus-stricken Italy following the announcement that Italian authorities were to extend quarantine measures to the whole country.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) amended its advice to warn against all but essential travel to the country on Monday evening, while the number of dead in Italy rose to 463.

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