Covid: Five things we learned from Boris Johnson's briefing as Greater Manchester moves into Tier 3

Greater Manchester will move to the "very high" coronavirus alert level, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed during the latest Covid briefing at Downing Street.

But what else did we learn from the prime minister's briefing on Tuesday?

1.) It is unclear exactly how much funding Greater Manchester will receive now that the area will move to Tier 3

Mr Johnson was asked at least four times to clarify if Greater Manchester is getting £60m for businesses and workers on top of the £22m for enforcement of new rules and contact tracing.

He continued to say "obviously we want to do more" before adding that "for the sake of fairness, the deal has to be in line" with agreements with Lancashire and Merseyside.

2.) 'National circuit break would have been really effective three weeks ago but not now', Professor Jonathan Van-Tam says

A national circuit break, which is where schools, pubs and restaurants close for a short period of time, would not be the right course of action to contain Covid-19 in England "right now".

"Pretty much everywhere in England is now heating up to some extent and we are trying to walk a very fine line between getting the virus under control in areas where it is out of control and incurring the minimum amount of economic damage in doing so," Professor Van-Tam said.

He said he doesn’t think it’s necessary to have a national circuit break as there are areas, for instance in the South West particularly in places like Kent, where levels of Covid are low.

ITV News' Political Editor Robert Peston said: "Prof Van-Tam just succeeded in undermining his own support for Boris Johnson's regionally differentiated coronavirus policy, by saying that it is appropriate for where we are now, but adding that a national lockdown imposed three or so weeks ago would have been more effective in nipping the infection surge in the bud (as it were)."

3.) South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Nottinghamshire and areas in the North East could move to Tier 3

Mr Johnson confirmed the government was having discussions with local leaders in various regions of the UK which could soon move from Tier 2 (high) Covid alert to Tier 3 (very high).

The prime minister added: "I hope and expect central and local government will continue to work closely together.

"Ultimately all of us want to protect the NHS and in doing so to save lives."

4.) Deputy chief medical officer for England says he expects the number of Covid deaths to increase

Professor Jonathan Van-Tam said he expected the upward trend in coronavirus deaths to continue to climb.

His comments came after the government announced a further 241 people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 as of Tuesday - the highest daily figure reported since 258 deaths were reported on June 5.

"Part of that surge in deaths is related to the weekly pattern of slightly lower figures at the weekend, and then a kind of catch-up earlier in the week," he said at the Downing Street press briefing.

"But overall is the trend upwards? Yes.

"Do I expect the trend in deaths to continue upwards? Yes, unfortunately I do," he added.

5.) Are Tier 3 measures enough to bring down Covid numbers?

The Deputy Chief Medical Officer for England said: "The nationally published Tier 3 measures are the minimum national standard for hard measures but there are other things that local authorities can consider on top and I hope some do."

Prof Jonathan Van-Tam added: "What is really important is compliance. Everybody needs to accept that this is not a good place to be if you’re in Tier 3, but to get behind it and try and get the rate of disease falling so that R in that area is falling so that the pressure comes off the health service."