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Fauci, CDC, FDA Chiefs Enter Quarantine After Coronavirus Exposure

Saturday, 09 May 2020 07:42 PM

The heads of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are entering quarantine after coming into contact with someone who tested positive for the coronavirus.

Late Saturday, CNN also reported that Anthony Fauci, the federal government’s top infectious disease expert, also was entering quarantine because of contact with an administration staffer who had tested positive for the virus.

Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and member of the White House's coronavirus task force, told CNN he will begin a "modified quarantine" after making a "low risk" contact with the White House staffer who tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

The "low risk" assessment means he was not in close proximity to the person who tested positive during the time when that person was known to be positive for the virus, CNN reported.

FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn told staff about his self-quarantine plans in a note on Friday, according to an emailed statement from the agency. CDC Director Robert Redfield, 68, will also go into quarantine, and will telework for two weeks.

The pair are members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force. Both are among Trump administration officials scheduled to testify to a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

One of the highest-profile task force members, Anthony Fauci, will not quarantine, said a spokesperson or the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, where Fauci is the director.

Fauci, 79, had minimal exposure to a known infected person, the spokesperson said. He’s tested negative for Covid-19 and will continue to be tested regularly.

The FDA didn’t identify the infected person with whom Hahn, 60, had come into contact, but his Covid-19 exposure comes as several aides working in the White House recently have tested positive for the virus. The Washington Post reported that Redfield’s exposure came at the White House on Wednesday.

Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary, Katie Miller, tested positive for coronavirus on Friday. Miller is the primary spokeswoman for the task force.

Miller’s diagnosis followed a positive test result earlier in the week for a member of the military who works as a valet to President Donald Trump. Miller is married to one of Trump’s closest aides, Stephen Miller.

Separately, Ivanka Trump’s personal assistant also has tested positive for Covid-19, according to a person familiar with the matter who asked not to be named discussing a private health situation. That aide doesn’t work on the White House campus.

Hahn, an oncologist, has led the FDA since December. The FDA has been playing a central role in the federal government’s response to Covid-19, which has claimed more than 78,000 American lives so far.

The most recent publicly-disclosed meeting of the White House task force was Thursday. Pence, who leads the group, traveled to Iowa on Friday for a round-table discussion on the U.S. food supply chain.

© Copyright 2020 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.


   
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The heads of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are entering quarantine after coming into contact with someone who tested positive for the coronavirus.FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn told staff about his self-quarantine...
cdc, fda, chiefs, enter, quarantine, virus
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2020-42-09
Saturday, 09 May 2020 07:42 PM
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