President Joe Biden continues to test positive for Covid-19 and now has a bit of a “loose cough” as he experiences a rebound case of the virus, his doctor said Monday.
Dr. Kevin O’Connor said in a memo that the President, who first tested positive for his rebound case on Saturday and has tested positive every day since, does not have a fever and that his lungs are “clear.”
“His temperature, pulse, blood pressure, respiratory rate and oxygen saturation remain entirely normal,” O’Connor said, adding that the President is in “good spirits.”
Biden, 79, is at an increased risk for a more severe case of Covid-19 due to his age, but the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says if older adults are fully vaccinated and boosted, it significantly reduces their risk of hospitalization and death. Biden is fully vaccinated and has received two booster shots.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre suggested on Monday in a briefing with reporters that the President had some lingering symptoms from his first Covid case and said, “As you know, some of you have had Covid … those symptoms that you have don’t go away right away, they kind of linger, those minimal symptoms kind of linger for some time. So you can expect that.”
The President had mild symptoms during his first bout of Covid, including a runny nose, fatigue, high temperature and a cough, according to his doctor.
O’Connor said in his memo on Saturday that the President had not experienced a “remergence of symptoms,” and then in his memos on Sunday and Monday said Biden “continues to feel well,” but did not say whether he was experiencing any symptoms.
Biden first tested positive on July 21 and proceeded to take a five-day course of the antiviral drug 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 CDC 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 like Paxlovid. The CDC said most cases of rebound involve mild disease and that there have been no reports of serious illness.
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Dr. Anthony Fauci also experienced a rebound case of Covid-19. His symptoms got worse when they returned after treatment, and his doctors prescribed another course of Paxlovid.
CNN’s Kevin Liptak and Donald Judd contributed to this report.