White House press secretary Jen Psaki tests positive for COVID-19
WASHINGTON - White House press secretary Jen Psaki announced Sunday that she tested positive for COVID-19, but has not had close contact with President Joe Biden since Wednesday.
Psaki said she decided not to travel with Biden to Italy as her family was being tested for COVID-19. Out of caution, she quarantined herself Wednesday through Saturday though she originally tested negative for the virus.
"However, today [Sunday], I tested positive for COVID," she posted on Twitter.
"While I have not had close contact in person with the President or senior members of the White House staff since Wednesday – and tested negative for four days after that last contact -- I am disclosing today’s positive test out of an abundance of transparency," she added.
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Psaki also claimed she "last saw the President on Tuesday, when we sat outside more than six-feet apart, and wore masks."
The press secretary also credited the COVID-19 vaccine.
"Thanks to the vaccine, I have only experienced mild symptoms which has enabled me to continue working from home," she continued.
Psaki said she plans to return to work following a 10-day quarantine and a negative rapid test.
In January, the White House announced COVID-19 protocols for employees including testing wristbands, mask-wearing and socially distancing.
Plexiglass barriers have been set up at some desks that are in open areas, but nearly all staff who are already working in the building have enclosed offices. The Biden team already had a robust contact tracing program set up during the transition, which it’s keeping around for any possible exposures.
Staffers also were issued laptops with wallpaper displays that offer a list of COVID symptoms and a directive to "call the White House medical unit" if they have experienced any of them.
This story was reported from Los Angeles.