England's Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty had warned the United Kingdom "will not have a vaccine available for the first wave" of a pandemic. One patient who tested positive for the novel coronavirus has died.
He added: "I offer my honest condolences to their family and friends and ask that their request for privacy is respected".
The 83-year-old tested positive for coronavirus shortly before his death at Milton Keynes Hospital on Thursday (5/3). "Eight patients were identified in the United Kingdom where it is not yet clear whether they contracted it directly or indirectly from an individual who had recently returned from overseas", he added.
The situation is worse in Italy where more than 2,500 confirmed cases of the virus have been recorded, with almost 80 deaths.
MK Hospital is undergoing extensive contact tracing to identify those who may have come in contact with the victim.
It comes as two people have died from the virus - which has a mortality rate of 15 per cent in those over 80 - on British soil so far, both of whom were elderly.
The woman, 70, was admitted to Royal Yorkshire hospital on Wednesday after she tested positive for coronavirus.
The comments from the leading microbiologist come as the Government's Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance warned the United Kingdom is only at the beginning of an outbreak.
"We are, if you like, teetering on the edge, but not there just yet", she said.
Proud mum Kate Middleton reveals Princess Charlotte 'loves gymnastics and dancing'
A beaming Kate continued talking to the little one, asking: 'Wow, do you like dancing?', with the girl saying she did. As for Prince William , he was spotted taking a selfie with a 12-year-old girl on Christmas Day in 2014.
Los Angeles County Declares Emergency Following 6 New Cases of Coronavirus
The City of Santa Monica says there are no known cases in Santa Monica and that they are working closely with the L.A. Supervisor Kathryn Barger said the county's declaration of a local emergency was taken "out of abundance of caution".
Showers Today; Heavier Rain Tuesday And Wednesday
Wednesday - A slight chance of rain and snow showers before 10am, then a slight chance of rain showers between 10am and 1pm. Despite the dreary conditions, temperatures will be similar to the past weekend in the upper 60s and low 70s.
- Dr Mike Ryan, from the World Health Organisation (WHO), said it was "a false hope" that coronavirus would disappear in the summer like flu.
- A church in Devon closed after a parishioner was diagnosed with coronavirus, while the Bhaktivedanta Manor Hare Krishna temple, near Watford, closed its doors after a member tested positive.
Twenty one people stranded on a cruise ship off the coast of California have tested positive for coronavirus.
Forty-eight new coronavirus cases have been confirmed in the United Kingdom over the past 24 hours, taking the total to 164.
- Prime Minister Boris Johnson visited a Bedfordshire laboratory as the Government pledged an extra £46 million for research into coronavirus vaccines and rapid diagnostic tests.
Health chiefs said people diagnosed with coronavirus who show only "very minimal" symptoms should self-isolate at home rather than in hospital.
As the virus is now confirmed to be circulating within the community, it is likely the Government will be forced to move to phase two of their four-step plan - Delay - with new guidance being announced next week.
The government has set out an action plan to tackle the spread of the virus.
Globally, the number of coronavirus cases has passed 100,000.