Boris Johnson is out of intensive care and in "extremely good spirits", Downing Street has said.

The prime minister has been in St Thomas’ Hospital in London since Sunday evening, when he was first admitted for tests.

The action was taken because Mr Johnson continued to have persistent coronavirus symptoms, more than a week after testing positive for COVID-19.

His health deteriorated on Monday afternoon to prompt NHS doctors to move him to an intensive care unit.

But Mr Johnson’s condition has now improved to the extent he is no longer receiving critical care – although he remains in hospital, Downing Street said on Thursday evening.

A Number 10 spokesman said: The prime minister has been moved this evening from intensive care back to the ward, where he will receive close monitoring during the early phase of his recovery.

He is in extremely good spirits.

Mr Johnson has stopped working and asked Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab to deputise for him while he remains in hospital.

Speaking at the daily Downing Street coronavirus briefing earlier on Thursday, during which he urged Britons to stay at home over the Easter weekend, Mr Raab said the prime minister continues to make positive steps forwards.

Mr Raab also revealed he has not yet spoken to Mr Johnson since taking over his responsibilities.

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Downing Street said on Thursday morning the prime minister continues to improve and had a good night at St Thomas’ Hospital – the fourth he has spent there.

The prime minister was receiving standard oxygen treatment, Number 10 added.

Mr Johnson was last seen in public a week ago, when he appeared on the doorstep of 11 Downing Street to join in with applause for NHS workers.

Mr Raab took part in Thursday night’s applause.

Mr Johnson’s pregnant fiancee Carrie Symonds revealed at the weekend she is on the mend after suffering coronavirus symptoms herself.

Ms Symonds posted her own tribute to NHS workers on Thursday evening, soon after it was revealed Mr Johnson had been moved from intensive care.

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(c) Sky News 2020: Coronavirus: Boris Johnson moved out of intensive care but remains in hospital