Biden administration to enforce strict COVID-19 guidelines for White House staff: report

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The incoming Biden administration is planning on enforcing far stricter guidelines to protect against the spread of COVID-19 in the White House than its predecessor, according to new guidance sent to staffers Tuesday.

The guidelines, reported by Axios, say that staffers will be required to take daily coronavirus tests and wear N95 face masks at all times. 

The efforts to blunt the virus’s spread mark a contrast with the Trump White House, which was rattled by a number of COVID-19 outbreaks as administration officials declined to wear masks. President Trump was sent to the hospital during his fight with the coronavirus after an outbreak at an outdoor event in the Rose Garden where most attendees were seen maskless.

The guidance was sent to officials who will have “proximity” to any White House “principals,” likely referring to chiefs of departments.

The staffers also appear set to have their first doses of the coronavirus vaccine.

“For those of you who have not yet received your first vaccine,” the guidance reportedly reads, “we will follow up in the coming days with information on how to do so.” 

Besides mask-wearing and the 15-minute rapid antigen tests, staffers are also being told to keep six feet apart from each other. 

“The Biden White House will follow public health guidelines that ensure that we are keeping all staff safe during the pandemic,” a transition official told Axios.

Transition officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.

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