Updated: July 21, 2022 02:08 PM
Created: July 21, 2022 09:35 AM
WASHINGTON (AP) - President Joe Biden has tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday, making him the second U.S. president to get the virus and underscoring the extent to which the virus has infiltrated American society.
The 79-year-old Biden is fully vaccinated after getting two initial doses of the coronavirus vaccine and two boosters since. When a fully vaccinated person experiences a breakthrough infection, the chance of severe illness or death is low.
According to Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, the President has begun taking the anti-viral pill Paxlovid which has been shown in clinical trials to be 89% effective in reducing the risk of severe COVID-19 illness.
Consistent with CDC guidelines, he will isolate at the White House and will continue to carry out all of his duties fully during that time.
He has been in contact with members of the White House staff by phone, and will participate in his planned meetings at the White House via phone and Zoom from the residence.
Consistent with White House protocol for positive COVID cases, which goes above and beyond CDC guidance, he will continue to work in isolation until he tests negative. Once he tests negative, he will return to in-person work. Out of an abundance of transparency, the White House will provide a daily update on the President’s status as he continues to carry out the full duties of the office while in isolation.
Per standard protocol for any positive case at the White House, the White House Medical Unit will inform all close contacts of the President during the day today, including any Members of Congress and any members of the press who interacted with the President during yesterday’s travel. The President’s last previous test for COVID was Tuesday, when he had a negative test result.
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