Trump cabinet member Ben Carson has been diagnosed with Covid-19, a spokesperson confirmed Monday, making him the second high-profile administration official in recent days to test positive for the virus.
Carson, the secretary for Housing and Urban Development, “is in good spirits” and “feels fortunate to have access to effective therapeutics which aid and markedly speed his recovery,” his chief of staff, Coalter Baker, told the Associated Press.
President Trump’s own chief of staff, Mark Meadows, tested positive for the virus late last week.
Carson is 69, Meadows 61.
Both attended an indoor White House Election Night party last week that reportedly had around 250 guests.
The news about Carson comes as the nation has received both good and bad news about the coronavirus in recent days.
On Saturday the number of daily coronavirus cases hit a record of 128,000 – the fourth day in a row the nation broke its own dubious record. Yesterday’s mark of 103,000 cases was a record for a Sunday. Hospitalizations and deaths are on the rise, too, although the latter number is not as high as it was during the spring or summer.
But Pfizer delivered good news to the nation Monday when it announced its vaccine, currently in the Phase 3 trial (the final phase), had proven to be more than 90 percent effective in preventing Covid-19. Such a percentage was much higher than investors and even some health experts expected. Anthony Fauci had said a vaccine that was 50 percent to 60 percent effective would be acceptable, CNBC reported.
“Today is a great day for science and humanity. The first set of results from our Phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine trial provides the initial evidence of our vaccine’s ability to prevent COVID-19,” said Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. “We are reaching this critical milestone in our vaccine development program at a time when the world needs it most with infection rates setting new records, hospitals nearing over-capacity and economies struggling to reopen. With today’s news, we are a significant step closer to providing people around the world with a much-needed breakthrough to help bring an end to this global health crisis.”
President Trump celebrated the news in a tweet: “STOCK MARKET UP BIG, VACCINE COMING SOON. REPORT 90% EFFECTIVE. SUCH GREAT NEWS!”
STOCK MARKET UP BIG, VACCINE COMING SOON. REPORT 90% EFFECTIVE. SUCH GREAT NEWS!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 9, 2020
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Mark Wilson/Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.