LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s health service, the NHS, will “probably” be able to cope with the coronavirus but it will be difficult, England’s chief medical officer Chris Whitty said on Wednesday.

“This is going to be a close-run thing – we all know that – and anybody who looks around the world can see this is going to be difficult for every health system,” he said at a daily news conference.

“We do think that if everybody sticks to staying in your household unless absolutely essential this … will be probably manageable by the NHS but we cannot guarantee that,” he added.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Howcroft; editing by Stephen Addison)