Biden continues to test positive for Covid-19 Wednesday following rebound diagnosis

President Joe Biden, pictured here on July 28, continues to test positive for Covid-19 and will stay in isolation, his physician Dr. Kevin O'Connor said in a new letter released on August 3.

By Betsy Klein, CNN

(CNN) -- President Joe Biden continues to test positive for Covid-19 and will stay in isolation, his physician Dr. Kevin O'Connor said in a new letter released Wednesday.

After taking a five-day course of Pfizer's antiviral drug, Paxlovid, when he first tested positive on July 21, Biden tested positive for a rebound case of Covid-19 on Saturday and resumed isolation. He has not left the White House in 14 days.

"Given his rebound positivity which we reported Saturday, we continued daily monitoring. This morning, his SARS-CoV-2 antigen test remained positive. The President will continue his strict isolation measures," O'Connor wrote in a memo to White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, which was shared with reporters.

Thursday will mark "day five" of his second isolation. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "People with recurrence of Covid-19 symptoms or a new positive viral test after having tested negative should restart isolation and isolate again for at least 5 days."

On Tuesday, O'Connor said that Biden, 79, was experiencing a "loose cough." On Wednesday, the doctor updated that Biden is "still experiencing an occasional cough, but less frequently than yesterday."

O'Connor said Biden "enjoyed" a "light workout" Wednesday morning, and his temperature, pulse, blood pressure, respiratory rate and oxygen saturation "remain entirely normal."

During Biden's first bout with the disease, he experienced mild symptoms, including runny nose, fatigue, high temperature and a cough, according to his doctor. The President completed a five-day course of Paxlovid, which requires a doctor's prescription and is available via emergency use authorization from the US Food and Drug Administration for treatment of mild-to-moderate Covid-19 in people 12 and older who are at high risk of severe illness.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health alert to doctors on May 24 advising that Covid-19 symptoms sometimes come back, and that may just be how the infection plays out in some people, regardless of whether they're vaccinated or treated with medications such as Paxlovid. The CDC said that most cases of rebound involve mild disease and that 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 his inauguration in January 2021, his first booster shot in September and his second booster vaccination in March.

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