Chris Whitty Biography, Chris Whitty Wiki
Christopher John MacRae Whitty CB FRCP FFPH FMedSci (born 21 April 1966) is a British consultant physician and epidemiologist, who is Chief Medical Officer for England (CMO), Chief Medical Adviser to the UK Government, Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) at the Department of Health and Social Care and Head of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).
Britain’s Chief Medical Officer has announced he will now be self-isolating after developing coronavirus symptoms just hours after Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock announced they had tested positive for the disease.
Professor Chris Whitty, who has been one of the leading voices during the deadly outbreak, said he will continue to advise the government but will be doing so from home as coronavirus hit hard at the heart of government.
Mr Whitty tweeted: ‘After experiencing symptoms compatible with COVID-19 last night, in line with the guidance, I will be self-isolating at home for the next seven days. I will be continuing to advise the Government on the medical response to Coronavirus, supported by my deputies.’
The top expert’s tweet is the latest in a series of bombshell revelations today as the coronavirus outbreak in the UK stepped up a gear.
Mr Johnson announced this morning in a video message that he had tested positive before Mr Hancock then announced the same.
Despite the two positive tests and Mr Whitty’s symptoms, Downing Street has insisted that senior ministers, officials and aides will not be tested for the disease unless they also develop symptoms.
It came as the UK’s coronavirus death toll jumped by a third to 759 after officials announced 181 more victims of the killer infection in the biggest daily rise yet.
Health chiefs also confirmed almost 15,000 Britons have now caught the virus, with 2,921 new cases of the deadly virus recorded in just 24 hours. The jump of 25 per cent in a single day marks another record high.
Mr Hancock had been due to take part in the government’s daily press conference but Michael Gove stepped in instead.
Mr Gove, the Minister for the Cabinet Office, revealed the PM has struck a new alliance between businesses, research institutes and universities to boost the UK’s testing capacity so that frontline workers will now be able to know for certain if they have coronavirus.
Meanwhile, Simon Stevens, the chief executive of the NHS, announced alongside Mr Gove that two more so-called Nightingale hospitals will be set up – one in Birmingham and one in Manchester – in addition to the one in London. Mr Stevens also said the health service now has 33,000 beds available for coronavirus patients.
The PM is now self-isolating in Number 11 Downing Street but has insisted he will continue to lead the nation’s fight against coronavirus with aides now leaving work and food at his door for him to pick up.
Mr Johnson started to feel unwell yesterday afternoon and was then tested after being advised to do so by Prof Whitty. He took part in a clap for the NHS event in Downing Street as he stood at least two metres away from Chancellor Rishi Sunak before then receiving his test results at midnight.
Fast Facts You Need to Know
- Boris Johnson announced that he has tested positive for coronavirus as the outbreak spreads across the UK
- Health Secretary Matt Hancock also tested positive while Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty has symptoms
- Despite positive tests at the heart of the government, Downing Street said senior ministers will not be tested
- PM self-isolating but he will still lead UK’s response to the crisis thanks to ‘wizardry of modern technology’
- Mr Johnson took part in applause for NHS staff from Downing Street last night and was in Commons for PMQ
- Bombshell news has raised fears that other politicians and senior officials will have been infected as well
- Mr Johnson’s partner Carrie Symonds pregnant and thought to have been following guidance on self-isolation
- Comes as UK death toll jumped by a third to 759 after officials announced 181 more victims of the killer bug
Chris Whitty Age
He is 54 years old.
Chris Whitty Early life and education
Chris Whitty was born in Gloucester on 21 April 1966 to Kenneth and Susannah Whitty. He spent his early years in northern Nigeria. His father was Director of the British Council in Athens but was murdered by Palestinian terrorists in 1984 when Whitty was in his teens.
Whitty was sent back to the UK for his schooling and was educated at Windlesham House School and Malvern College. Following this, he was educated at Pembroke College, University of Oxford (BA, 1988), Wolfson College, Oxford (BM BCh, 1991), the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (DTM&H, 1996; MSc, 1996), Northumbria University (LLM, 2005) and Heriot-Watt University (MBA, 2010).
Chris Whitty Career
Whitty is a practising National Health Service (NHS) consultant physician at University College London Hospitals (UCLH) and the Hospital for Tropical Diseases, and Gresham Professor of Physic at Gresham College. Until becoming CMO he was Professor of Public and International Health at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). In 2008, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation awarded the LSHTM £31 million for malaria research in Africa. At the time, Whitty was the principal investigator for the ACT Consortium, which conducted the research programme.
Chris Whitty Government
Department for International Development (London office) (far right)
From 2009 to 2015, he was Chief Scientific Adviser and director of research for the Department for International Development (DFID). During this time, he co-authored an article in Nature titled “Infectious disease: Tough choices to reduce Ebola transmission”, explaining the UK government’s response to Ebola in Sierra Leone, including the proposal to build and support centres where people could self-isolate voluntarily if they suspected that they could have the disease.
From 2016 to 2019, he was Chief Scientific Adviser and head of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Department of Health and Social Care. From 2017 to 2018, he was appointed interim Government Chief Scientific Adviser and head of the science and engineering profession in government, when Novichok, the military nerve agent, was responsible for the 2018 Salisbury poisonings.
In March 2020, Whitty took a high-profile role during the 2020 coronavirus outbreak in the United Kingdom. This included appearing with prime minister Boris Johnson and alone in press briefings, and giving evidence to parliamentary bodies. Whitty gave updates on developments of the virus in the UK, appearing in news conferences in Downing Street with Johnson and Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance.
From 19 March, Whitty appeared in public information adverts aimed at keeping the public safe during the pandemic.
Chris Whitty Awards and honours
Whitty was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Bath (CB) in the 2015 New Year Honours. He is a fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences
Public lectures outlining his views on tackling current challenges in medicine and public health include Gresham lectures and the 2017 Harveian Oration at the Royal College of Physicians.
Chris Whitty Married, Wife, Children
Whitty is the eldest of four brothers. He is unmarried and does not have children. He is known to play tennis and believed to be keen on music. Otherwise, he has been quoted by Whitehall sources as a “private person who never discusses his personal life.”