Biden tests positive for COVID again in Paxlovid ‘rebound’

Biden’s doctor said the president had a “rebound” of COVID positivity after being treated with Paxlovid.

WASHINGTON — Days after ending his COVID-19 isolation, President Joe Biden has tested positive for the virus again, his doctor said Saturday.

Biden’s treatment included a five-day course of Paxlovid, an antiviral drug used to treat COVID-19 that has helped prevent more serious illnesses. His doctor said Biden is among a small percentage of Paxlovid patients who “recover” and test positive again.

“After testing negative on Tuesday evening, Wednesday morning, Thursday morning and Friday morning, the President tested positive by antigen testing late Saturday morning,” wrote Dr. Kevin O’Connor in a letter. “This indeed stands for ‘rebound’ positivity.”

EARLIER: Biden tests negative for COVID-19, ends ‘strict isolation’

O’Connor said Biden has no symptoms and is feeling “pretty good” so his health team is not resuming treatment.

“Guys, today I tested positive for COVID again.” Biden said on Twitter. “This happens to a small minority of people. I have no symptoms but will isolate myself for the safety of everyone around me. I’m still at work and will be back on the road soon.”

Regulators are still investigating rebound cases, but the CDC warned doctors in May that it reportedly occurs within two to eight days of first testing negative for the virus.

“Limited information currently available from case reports suggests that individuals treated with Paxlovid who experience a COVID-19 rebound had mild illness; There are no reports of serious illnesses,” the agency said at the time.

White House COVID-19 Coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha told reporters Monday that “clinical data suggests that between 5 and 8 percent of people have experienced a rebound after Paxlovid treatment.”

US health officials have encouraged those who test positive to consult their doctor or pharmacist to see if they should be prescribed the treatment despite the risk of rebound.

Biden is fully vaccinated and has received two booster doses. He was diagnosed with the highly transmissible BA.5 variant of COVID but had a mild seizure with the virus. O’Connor consistently wrote in his updates that Biden’s vital signs remained strong and his temperature was raised only momentarily. He suffered from a runny nose, cough, sore throat and some body aches.

RELATED: Here are the most common symptoms for the BA.5 and BA.4 variants

However, the infection was troublesome. Biden canceled a trip to Pennsylvania to explain his crime prevention plans and speak at a Democratic National Committee fundraiser, skipping a long weekend at his family home in Delaware.

First Lady Jill Biden left without him and Biden was isolated at the White House residence. With voters already concerned about Biden’s age — he turns 80 in November — his advisers emphasized that he’s working despite his illness.

Biden’s positive test on Saturday also disrupts his itinerary. He was due to travel to Michigan on Tuesday to highlight the passage of a bill to boost domestic high-tech manufacturing. He was also scheduled to visit Jill Biden in Delaware on Sunday. Biden tests positive for COVID again in Paxlovid ‘rebound’

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