First Lady Jill Biden has tested positive for COVID-19, the White House announced on Monday, September 4, 2023. She is experiencing mild symptoms and will remain at their home in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, where she and President Joe Biden spent the Labor Day weekend.
President Joe Biden tested negative for COVID-19 on Monday evening, after his wife’s positive test result. The President will continue to test regularly and monitor for symptoms throughout the week, according to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki.
Psaki said that the First Lady was fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and that her infection was likely a breakthrough case. She added that the First Lady’s contact tracing was underway and that anyone who had been in close contact with her would be notified and tested.
The President and the First Lady had no public events scheduled for Monday. Psaki said that the President’s schedule for the rest of the week would be determined based on his test results and the advice of his medical team.
The White House has not disclosed how the First Lady contracted the virus or when she was last tested before Monday. Psaki said that the First Lady followed all public health guidelines and wore a mask when traveling and in public settings.
The First Lady’s positive test comes amid a surge of COVID-19 cases in the United States, driven by the highly contagious Delta variant. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported more than 300,000 new cases and over 2,000 deaths on Sunday, September 3, 2023.
The CDC also reported that more than 208 million Americans have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and more than 177 million are fully vaccinated. However, vaccine hesitancy and misinformation remain major challenges in some parts of the country.
The White House has urged all Americans to get vaccinated as soon as possible and to follow public health measures such as wearing masks, social distancing, and avoiding large gatherings. The President has also announced a series of initiatives to increase vaccination rates, including mandating vaccines for federal workers and contractors, and requiring employers with more than 100 workers to ensure their employees are vaccinated or tested weekly.
The White House has also expressed its support and solidarity with the First Lady and wished her a speedy recovery. Psaki said that the President and the First Lady were grateful for the well-wishes and prayers from the American people and their friends around the world.