President Joe Biden’s doctor said Sunday that he “continues to improve significantly” after testing positive for COVID-19 last week.
Kevin O’Connor, Biden’s doctor, wrote in a letter released by the White House that Biden’s primary symptom was a sore throat and that his runny nose, cough and body aches had all “significantly decreased.”
Biden completed his third day of Paxlovid, a COVID treatment, on Saturday night.
“His pulse, blood pressure, respiratory rate and temperature all remain normal. His oxygen saturation continues to be excellent on room air. His lungs remain clear,” O’Connor added in the memo to the White House press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre.
Biden tested positive for coronavirus three days ago. O’Connor wrote in a note on Saturday that he likely had the BA.5 subvariant, which now accounts for the majority of COVID-19 cases in the country and is more resistant to vaccines than previous strains.
The president appeared to contract a relatively minor case of the virus, according to the White House, with his symptoms consistently including a runny nose and a cough. He started feeling a sore throat and body aches on Saturday.
O’Connor never said Biden’s pulse, blood pressure, respiratory rate or oxygen were outside normal ranges throughout his infection.
In addition to Paxlovid, Biden uses an albuterol cough inhaler, according to O’Connor. He is fully vaccinated and double-boosted.
Dr. Ashish Jha, the White House coronavirus coordinator, also expressed optimism on Sunday about the president’s infection, saying: “He had a great day yesterday, felt great.”
“This is a president who has had double vaccination, double injection, treatments that are widely available to Americans and who is currently suffering from a mild respiratory illness,” Jha told “This. Week” from ABC. “It’s very good news, and it’s both vaccines and treatments that are available for everyone. It’s really important that people go out and get vaccinated and take advantage of these treatments if they are infected. .”
Biden began exhibiting symptoms on Wednesday night and eventually tested positive on Thursday, his aides say.
White House spokesman John Kirby said Friday that Biden’s positive test had “no impact” on “the national security decision-making process.”
Seventeen people have been identified as close contacts of Biden, though none of them have tested positive for COVID-19. Among them are First Lady Jill Biden, who remains in Delaware until at least Tuesday, and Vice President Kamala Harris, who maintains her normal public schedule.
The president is working from the White House residence and will continue to do so until he tests negative.