Biden’s comeback symptoms are an example of a rebound case of Covid-19, a phenomenon that occurred in some cases after people took Paxlovid.
Biden is self-isolating at the White House and has canceled his immediate travel plans. He had planned to meet with the first lady of Delaware on Sunday and travel early next week to promote passage of the chip funding bill. “He’s not going to Delaware or Michigan and he’s self-isolating in the White House residence,” a White House official said.
The official said the White House was “in the process of doing contact tracing and once we determine the number, we will release it.”
Biden tweeted about his condition on Saturday. “Friends, today I tested positive for COVID again. It happens with a small minority of people. I have no symptoms but I will self-isolate for the safety of everyone around me I’m still at work and will be back on the road soon,” he tweeted.
Biden emerged from initial isolation last Wednesday, after taking a five-day course of Paxlovid, an antiviral therapy from Pfizer, and testing negative for COVID-19 on Tuesday evening and again on Wednesday morning.
The president was not masked at public events he attended at the end of the week, which conflicts with CDC guidelines that people should wear a mask for 10 days after a Covid infection.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told a briefing that the president was still in compliance with CDC guidelines because he was more than six feet from other people.
When he initially tested positive for COVID a week ago on Thursday, the president experienced mild symptoms on the upper floors of the White House.
In late May, the CDC issued a health advisory regarding the recurrence of symptoms and noted that there had been no cases of serious illness as part of this rebound. The agency also said there is currently no evidence that a second cycle of Paxlovid is needed for these symptoms to resolve.
However, that hasn’t stopped some doctors from prescribing their patients a second round of Paxlovid out of an abundance of caution. Anthony Fauci, the White House’s chief medical adviser, received two antiviral treatments after experiencing a similar rebound in symptoms.