U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has revealed that doctors prepared to announce his death as he battled coronavirus, ending up in intensive care, last month.
Johnson said that he was given “litres and litres of oxygen” to keep him alive as he recounted his life-or-death experience with the virus.
“It was a tough old moment, I won’t deny it,” the prime minister, who only days ago announced the birth of his son with partner Carrie Symonds, said in an emotional interview to Britain’s The Sun on Sunday newspaper. “They had a strategy.”
Johnson, 55, said he was aware there were contingency plans in place after he became the first western leader to be hospitalized for COVID-19, the disease the virus causes. Britain’s Foreign secretary Dominic Raab had to deputize for the PM and steer the country’s response to the pandemic while he was in hospital.
“The doctors had all sorts of arrangements for what to do if things went badly wrong,” Johnson said.
When his health deteriorated further, Johnson was moved into intensive care, shocking the nation in the midst of a lockdown.
“The bad moment came when it was 50-50 whether they were going to have to put a tube down my windpipe,” Johnson said. “That was when it got a bit . . . they were starting to think about how to handle it presentationally.”