Joe Biden Contracts Covid-19
According to a statement by Karine Jean-Pierre, white house press secretary, Biden is experiencing “mild symptoms” and has begun taking Paxlovid, an anti-viral treatment.
The First Lady, Jill Biden said he is “doing fine”, and she had tested negative.
Consistent with White House protocol the president will continue to work in isolation until he tests negative, Ms. Jean-Pierre said, he will take part in meetings via telephone and Zoom, the official said.
He said Mr. Biden went to bed feeling fine but did not sleep well and then tested positive on Thursday morning.
Ms. Jean-Pierre will hold a press briefing alongside Dr. Jha later.
The White House medical unit will inform all close contacts of the president during the day, Ms. Jean-Pierre said, including any members of Congress or members of the press who were with Mr. Biden during his visit to Massachusetts on Wednesday.
First Lady Mrs. Biden said she had spoken to her husband and he was “doing fine”.
In a memo to Ms. Jean-Pierre, Mr. Biden’s physician Kevin O’Connor said he thought the president would respond favorably due to being fully vaccinated and twice boosted, adding that the early use of Paxlovid provided “additional protection against severe disease”.
The US Vice President Kamala Harris is in North Carolina for an abortion rights event and is expected to speak later.
Should Mr. Biden become unable to carry out his duties due to illness she would be given presidential powers.
This happened briefly in November when Mr. Biden was put under general anesthetic during a regular health check.
Mr. Biden is not the first US president to suffer Covid after his predecessor Donald Trump had to be taken to hospital after contracting the virus in October 2020 while he was in office.