• Video report by ITV News Reporter Helen Keegan

Boris Johnson is writing to every household in the UKto urge the public to obey the lockdown and stay home during the coronavirus “national emergency”.

The Prime Minister, who is self-isolating after testing positive for Covid-19, will warn “things will get worse before they get better” as he stresses the need to stay indoors to support the NHS by slowing the spread.

At an anticipated cost of £5.8 million, the letters will land on 30 million doorsteps along with a leaflet spelling out the Government’s advice following much public confusion.

The prime minister is writing to every household telling them to obey the lockdown. Credit: PA

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They are the latest in a public information campaign from No 10 to convince people to stay at home, wash their hands and shield the most vulnerable from the disease.

“We know things will get worse before they get better,” the PM’s letter will read.

“But we are making the right preparations, and the more we all follow the rules, the fewer lives will be lost and the sooner life can return to normal.

“It has been truly inspirational to see our doctors, nurses and other carers rise magnificently to the needs of the hour.

“Thousands of retired doctors and nurses are returning to the NHS – and hundreds of thousands of citizens are volunteering to help the most vulnerable.

“That is why, at this moment of national emergency, I urge you, please, to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.”

Amid allegations of confusing messages on the lockdown, the leaflet will outline the Government’s rules on leaving the house and advice on shielding vulnerable people.

A clear explanation of the symptoms will also be included as will guidance on hand washing.

The latest figures released show a total of 1,228 patients have died after testing positive for the virus since the outbreak began in the UK.

At least 13 of the patients to have died after contracting the virus had no underlying health conditions.

The announcement comes as an NHS boss said keeping UK coronavirus deaths below 20,000 would be "a good result".