Jill Biden, 72, has tested positive for Covid and is showing “mild symptoms”, the White House said in a statement issued on September 4.
President Joe Biden has been tested for Covid after his wife tested positive, according to a separate statement issued by the White House. His test came back negative, but “he will be testing at a regular rate this week and will be monitoring for symptoms,” the statement said.
Mr. and Mrs. Biden both had Covid in the summer of 2022, as well The independent previously mentioned.
Mrs Biden's positive test comes as experts warn not to underestimate the current summer wave of Covid cases.
Health authorities are monitoring two new variants of concern—BA.2.86, commonly known as ‘Pirola', and EG.5.1, commonly known as ‘Eris'.
The number of cases in the US has increased at an alarming rate: From August 20 to 26, deaths from Covid increased by 17.6 percent compared to the previous week, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of Diseases (CDC). The CDC did not release hospitalization data for that week, but the agency said hospitalizations rose 18.8 percent in the week of Aug. 13-19. expressing concern.
Last week, Dr. Deborah Birx, who served as the White House's coronavirus response coordinator under then-President Donald Trump, told ABC News that by ignoring Covid, Americans were living in a “fantasy world.” .
“We pretend that Covid is not relevant,” Dr Birx said. “But I can tell you… you know two or three people who have Covid. That means 5 to 10 percent of your friends already have Covid.”
Health authorities have stressed the importance of getting treatment for Covid as soon as you test positive, if you are able. Not everyone qualifies for antiviral drugs that can prevent serious illness from the virus, but Mrs. Biden does because of her age.
Currently, there are three antiviral drugs—Paxlovid, Vekulry, and Lagevrio—available to adults who are over a certain age or are at high risk of developing severe disease from Covid-19. (Only Paxlovid and Veklury are available for children.)
All available treatments should be taken “as soon as possible,” according to the CDC. Paxlovid and Lagevrio can be taken by mouth at home, but Veklury is given as an intravenous (IV) infusion in a healthcare facility over three days.
Antiviral drugs have been shown to be effective in reducing the risk of severe disease for older people with Covid-19. A 2022 study published in New England Journal of Medicine found that Paxlovid, in particular, significantly reduced the risk of hospitalization in adults over 65 with Covid.
But experts say the lifesaving drug is being prescribed far less than it should be. The New York Times reported that, in some states, the drug is recommended in less than 20 to 25 percent of recorded cases.
The White House statement announcing Ms. Biden's positive test did not specify what her treatment plan entails. Last year, Mr. and Mrs. Biden both took Paxlovid, according to CNN.