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President Trump is experiencing "mild" coronavirus symptoms after testing positive, a maskless White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told reporters on Friday.

Why it matters: The president is at high risk for a severe COVID-19 infection, due to his age at 74 and his body mass index, which puts him just over the line into obesity, as recorded in his last two annual physicals.

What they're saying: "The president does have mild symptoms. ... He continues to be, not only in good spirits, but very energetic," Meadows told reporters.

  • "We've talked a number of times this morning. I got the five or six things that he tasked me to do, like I do every single morning. He is certainly wanting to make sure that we stay engaged."
  • "The doctors continue to monitor both his health and the health of the first lady," he said, noting that updates could come later on Friday.
  • "I have mild symptoms but overall feeling good. I am looking forward to a speedy recovery," First Lady Melania Trump tweeted.

Of note: Meadows did not answer reporters' questions on Trump's medical regimen. When asked why he was not wearing a mask, Meadows said that he had taken a coronavirus test, but did not specify when.

Go deeper

Jan 8, 2021 - Health

Biden to release nearly all available COVID-19 vaccine doses to the public

Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

President-elect Joe Biden plans to release nearly all available coronavirus vaccine doses when he takes office, CNN reports.

Why it matters: Releasing nearly all doses would allow more people to get vaccinated with at least one dose. At the moment, the Trump administration is withholding half of U.S. vaccine production to ensure recipients receive their second dose, which is required by both the Moderna and Pfizer shots to ensure 95% efficacy.

Return-to-work plans on ice after COVID spike

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Even more "back-to-office" callbacks are being postponed amid a surge in COVID-19 infections.

Why it matters: It feels like March 13, 2020, all over again. When businesses sent all their workers home, it was an early big hint the pandemic was going to upend our lives.

How the Delta variant ups the stakes in the war against COVID

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The dominant Delta variant's ability to efficiently infect people and rapidly grow inside a person is enabling the coronavirus to regain its footing in the United States.

Why it matters: "The solution is right in front of us — get everybody vaccinated and we wouldn't even be talking about this," NIAID director Anthony Fauci tells Axios.

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