WASHINGTON, USA — America’s First Lady Jill Biden has tested positive for COVID-19, the White House announced on Monday, September 4, 2023, raising concerns ahead of President Joe Biden’s scheduled visit to New Delhi for the G20 summit later this week.
“Following the First Lady’s positive test for COVID-19, President Biden was administered a COVID test this evening. The president tested negative,” the White House said in a statement.
This development comes after the President and First Lady returned from a trip to Florida to inspect damage caused by Hurricane Idalia.
They subsequently spent several days at their beach home in Delaware.
According to the White House, President Biden, who has previously contracted the virus twice, will be tested regularly and monitored for symptoms.
President Biden first tested positive on July 21, 2022, and experienced “very mild symptoms,” according to White House officials. A second positive test followed just a week later on July 30, 2022.
Jill Biden also contracted the virus in August 2022. Both the President and the First Lady are fully vaccinated.
Despite President Biden’s negative test result, the diagnosis of the First Lady could potentially disrupt the President’s travel plans for the G20 summit in India.
The White House did not provide further details on how this might affect the President’s itinerary or whether the First Lady was experiencing symptoms.
As the U.S. and other nations continue to grapple with intermittent surges of the virus, the diagnosis renews questions about public health protocols among high-profile government officials and the efficacy of vaccines in preventing severe illness.
The news of the First Lady’s diagnosis also comes when the administration is under scrutiny for handling the ongoing pandemic, economic challenges, and foreign policy issues.
The President’s health has been a subject of public interest, given his age and the demands of his office.
This latest development adds another layer of complexity to a presidency that has had to navigate multiple crises, including the ongoing pandemic, economic upheaval, and geopolitical tensions.
White House officials assured that the President remains in good health and will continue with his duties, but the incident underscores the unpredictable nature of a virus that continues to affect people across demographic and social strata.
As the world looks towards the G20 summit for global leadership on various pressing issues, including public health, climate change, and international security, all eyes will be on how this personal health development affects the American President’s participation.