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this morning, president trump tested positive for covid-19. he has been in full quarantine since march 9th. he is experiencing mild respiratory symptoms. an evaluation by the white house medical unit was done to ensure that he was comfortable and no longer had a fever. the white house medical unit has determined that the president can resume all duties during the quarantine period. he will continue to remain in quarantine until he tests negative. similar to his predecessors during the sars and mers outbreaks, he will continue to work from his residence and will have access to all staff. his last previous test for covid was march 24 when he had a negative test result. on that same day, he was tested by the cdc and tested negative. shortly thereafter, we received additional reports of his positive test result.
president trump: “you do a test, you let it be known. you’re testing it for a short time. then you’ll get a better idea of what’s going on.. it’s just a test. we’re going to have a lot more tests. we’re going to have a lot more testing.”
the president: this is a time when people have to pull together. we have to pull together. we have a lot of things to do together. i would say that we need people to pull together, just like they did back in the 1930s and the 1940s during the war.
on march 30, an employee of the smithsonian national air and space museum tested positive for covid-19. this morning, a second employee tested positive. following cdc guidelines, the smithsonian has commenced a period of public health isolation for those who were in close contact with the first employee and is contacting the previous employees contact who was placed into a period of isolation. the employee who tested positive earlier today was asymptomatic and will be working from home.
there have been no transfusion-transmitted cases of covid-19 to date. on july 17, the centers for disease control and prevention (cdc) stated that based on current evidence, blood products do not appear to be a risk factor for covid-19 transmission. since december 2019, the cdc has not recommended that blood donors defer donating blood to the american red cross (arc) or any other blood services agency. under a special emergency protocol, cdc has not recommended that blood donors defer giving blood since late may 2020. cdc recommends that donors who have traveled to or lived in areas where covid-19 outbreaks have been identified or where transmission is ongoing defer giving blood for the 21 days after the last potential exposure. as stated on the national testing sites’ homepages, donated blood from donors who have traveled to a testing site within the 21-day deferral window is still eligible for blood donor screening. if a donor does test positive for the virus, they will be advised to stay at home until they are no longer infectious and to inform their healthcare provider. donors who do test negative for the virus and confirm they have stayed at home, have not visited an area where outbreaks have been reported, or where transmission is ongoing will remain eligible to donate blood and will continue to be tested as part of the arc screening process. red cell units remain eligible for transfusion in the event of emergency.
the red cross started screening for hiv antibodies in blood donors on november 20, 2002. this screening process has been seamless since. first, all donors are tested in a duplex hiv-1 and -2 assay (enzyme immunoassay). second, all positive test results are confirmed by a third step hiv-1 assay (enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay) for screening donors with questionable risk histories.