President Trump announced early Friday he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for Covid-19.
His announcement came just hours after news that Hope Hicks, one of the President's closest aides, also tested positive. Hicks had traveled with Trump multiple times recently and was seen this week with several other of the President's aides — none of whom wore masks.
"This is very concerning," says Anne Rimoin, an epidemiology professor at UCLA. "The number of people that could potentially be exposed and at risk of contracting this virus is significant here."
There are many questions going forward — including who else may have been exposed to the virus and what the President and the first lady will need to do now.
Here's what the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says should happen when someone tests positive for the virus or is exposed to an infected individual:
- If you test positive: People who have tested positive for Covid-19 need to go into isolation, according to guidance from the CDC updated in August. Those in isolation should stay home, unless they need to get medical care, and monitor their symptoms, according to the agency. Those infected should wear masks covering their nose and mouth when they're around others, the CDC said.
- Who may have been exposed: According to the CDC, an infected person can spread the virus starting 48 hours before the person has any symptoms or tests positive. "By letting your close contacts know they may have been exposed to COVID-19, you are helping to protect everyone," the agency said.
- About close contacts: The CDC says close contacts can include: anyone who was within six feet of an infected individual for at least 15 minutes; anyone who cared for someone who was infected or had direct physical contact, like hugging or kissing; anyone who shared eating or drinking utensils and anyone who may have gotten respiratory droplets from an infected individual through something like a sneeze or a cough.