A staffer in the team of US Vice President Mike Pence has tested positive for the coronavirus, making him the first White House personnel to have been infected by the deadly disease that has so far claimed the lives of 230 people in the country.
"This evening we were notified that a member of the office of the Vice President tested positive for the coronavirus," Katie Miller, Press Secretary to Vice President, said in a statement.
Neither President Donald Trump nor Vice President Pence had close contact with the individual, she said.
"Further contact tracing is being conducted in accordance with CDC guidelines," Miller said.
This is the first case of a White House staffer being tested positive for the deadly virus. Last week, Trump had tested for the coronavirus but the result was negative.
Mike Pence said this week he had not been tested for coronavirus, citing guidance from the White House doctor.
The White House has instituted strict provisions for entry of individuals within its premises. Members of the presidential physicians' team and secret service take temperature of every individual who enter the premises.
The seating arrangements in the White House briefing room has been rearranged to maintain social distancing.
States and localities announced the new rules as the death toll in the United States surpassed 200, and as Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., recorded their first deaths.
Several Trump administration officials have self-quarantined themselves over the coronavirus outbreak. Mick Mulvaney, outgoing acting White House chief of staff, entered self-quarantine in his home state of South Carolina, this week, after his niece, with whom he shares an apartment in Washington, fell ill.
Amid the outbreak, Sec. Sonny Perude, released a video on Twitter assuring the state that the food supply is sound and people are on the job