(CNN) — President Joe Biden has tested negative for COVID-19 but will remain in isolation pending a second test, his doctor announced in a letter Saturday.
“The President continues to feel great,” Dr. Kevin O’Connor wrote. “Given the rebound positivity from him that we reported last Saturday, we have continued daily monitoring. This morning, his SARS-CoV-2 antigen test was negative. In an abundance of caution, the President will continue his strict isolation measures pending a second negative test as described above.”
Biden has not left the White House for 17 days, after initially testing positive for Covid-19 on July 21; After taking a five-day course of Pfizer’s antiviral drug Paxlovid, Biden tested positive for a rebound case of Covid-19 last Saturday and returned to isolation. There are currently no events on his public agenda for the weekend.
During isolation, the president participated in public events virtually from the White House residence and, on two occasions, delivered physical distancing remarks at a restricted pool from the balcony of the Blue Room, announcing a successful attack that killed the leader of Al Qaeda Ayman al-Zawahiri on Monday and signing two bills to crack down on covid-19 aid fraud on Friday.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “people with a recurrence of covid-19 symptoms or a new positive viral test after testing negative should restart isolation and self-isolate again for at least 5 days.”
During Biden’s first bout with the disease, the president experienced mild symptoms, including a runny nose, fatigue, a high temperature and a cough, according to his doctor. The president completed a five-day course of Paxlovid, a prescription drug available through a U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Critical Illness Emergency Use Authorization. its acronym in English).
The CDC issued a health alert for doctors on May 24, warning that Covid-19 symptoms sometimes return, and that could be how the infection develops in some people, regardless of whether they’re vaccinated or treated with drugs such as Paxlovid. The CDC said most rebound cases involve mild illness and there have been no reports of serious illness.
Biden is fully vaccinated and received two booster shots. He received his first two doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine ahead of its launch in January 2021, his first booster shot in September, and his second booster shot in March.