President Joe Biden, who has been coughing and speaking with a more gravelly voice, just has a cold.
The White House physician released a memo on Friday confirming that the president has “increased nasal congestion,” and has tested negative for COVID-19 three times this week. The doctor also tested Biden for the flu and strep throat, which came` back negative.
“As is readily apparent, President Biden is experiencing some increased nasal congestion this week,” wrote the president’s physician, Kevin C. O’Connor, who said Biden has “the colloquially well-known ‘frog in one’s throat.’”
The president is being treated with over-the-counter medication for his congestion symptoms.
When asked by reporters if he was “OK” because his voice sounded different, Biden explained that his 1-and-a-half-year-old grandson has a cold and likely passed it to him.
“I’m OK,” Biden said. “What I have is a 1-and-a-half-year-old grandson who had a cold, who likes to kiss his Pop. … It’s just a cold.”
Earlier this week, Biden announced new measures to combat the spread of the new omicron variant of COVID-19 in the U.S., including making private health insurances reimburse people for at-home tests, as well as tightening requirements for international travelers into the U.S.
The president has been urging everyone eligible to get vaccinated, including booster shots.