US Defense secretary Lloyd positive for COVID for second time

AP , Monday 15 Aug 2022

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said Monday he has tested positive for COVID-19 and is experiencing mild symptoms and will quarantine at home. It's the second time Austin has gotten the coronavirus.

Lloyd Austin
File Photo: Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin smiles during a news conference with Latvian Defense Minister Artis Pabriks in Riga, Latvia, Aug. 10, 2022. AP


In a statement, Austin, 69, said his is fully vaccinated and has received two boosters. He said he'll quarantine for the next five days in accordance with CDC guidelines and ``will retain all authorities and plan to maintain my normal work schedule virtually from home.''

Austin said his last in-person contact with President Joe Biden was on July 29.

In January, Austin also contracted COVID and had received a booster in October.

``Now, as in January, my doctor told me that my fully vaccinated status, including two booster shots, is why my symptoms are less severe than would otherwise be the case,'' Austin said. ``I will continue to consult closely with my doctor in the coming days.''

He added, ``Vaccinations continue to both slow the spread of COVID-19 and to make its health effects less severe. Vaccination remains a medical requirement for our workforce, and I continue to encourage everyone to get fully vaccinated and boosted.''

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