Dr. Marc Siegel: Biden ‘played too loose’ with masking rules after COVID

After contracting COVID-19 earlier this month and subsequently testing negative, President Joe Biden reportedly received a positive test result again on Saturday morning, and in the estimation of one prominent doctor, the commander in chief’s own cavalier approach to official mitigation guidelines did not set the right tone for the country, as Fox News reports.

New York University medical professor and Fox News contributor Dr. Mac Siegel asserted over the weekend that Biden’s apparent violation of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) mask protocols was “not a good look for a president who talks about mandates.”

“Conscientious to protect”

On Wednesday of last week, Biden made his way back to the Oval Office after maintaining five days of COVID-19 quarantine, noting that he had received two negative test results over the course of the prior 24-hour period, as CNBC noted.

In brief remarks, Biden declared, “My symptoms were mild, my recovery was quick, and I’m feeling great,” an outcome that was certainly a relief to those concerned about the potential effects of the coronavirus on someone of the president’s advanced age and existing health conditions.

Though he called an end to his official time in isolation, White House physician Dr. Kevin O’Connor emphasized that Biden was continuing “to be very specifically conscientious to protect” any and all staffers, Secret Service agents, and other individuals who were likely to be near him in the coming days.

As Fox News noted, however, on Wednesday, Biden appeared at multiple indoor White House events without a mask, in apparent contravention of CDC guidance, which indicates that those who test positive for the virus should don a “well-fitting mask” for 10 days after initial exposure.

“Do not go to places where you are unable to wear a well-fitting mask,” the CDC recommendations suggest, advice that Biden clearly did not heed.

Siegel’s scorn

The president’s conduct, according to Dr. Siegel, runs contrary to everything the administration has preached when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19 and does not set the sort of example he would have expected.

“Not a good look for a president who talks about mandates. He has played too loose with this. The antigen test is predictive of low infectivity if negative, but a high quality mask KN95 or better would have been a wise precaution,” said Siegel.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre did not appear to share Siegel’s assessment of the risk posed by Biden’s conduct, explaining that the president was maskless at Wednesday’s events because social distancing precautions were put in place, rendering his relative proximity to others “safe.”

“Rebound” on repeat

As a result of his Saturday test results, Biden has returned to isolation with what the White House called a rare case of “rebound” COVID-19, though he has reportedly “experienced no reemergence of symptoms and continues to feel quite well,” with no plans to restart the Paxlovid treatment he received last week, according to the Associated Press.

Given that the same, supposedly “rare” phenomenon also struck chief White House medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci last month, it should come as no surprise that the serious suspicions millions have about the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccines, boosters, treatments, and mitigation methods this administration has imposed on the populace with an iron fist continue to persist.

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