D.C. Raps White House for Rose Garden Event Amid Outbreak, Urges Attendees to Take COVID-19 Test

D.C.’s Department of Health sent a letter to those who have worked in the White House in recent weeks or attended President Trump’s Sept. 26 announcement of his Supreme Court nominee in the White House Rose Garden to seek medical counsel and take a coronavirus test.

The letter, sent Thursday, expressed concerns about the president, multiple senior staff members, two U.S. senators and others being diagnosed with COVID-19 after the event and the lack of contact tracing protocols taking place at the White House.

The letter, co-signed by nine other heads of local health departments in the D.C. metropolitan area, requests attendees at the Rose Garden event to “contact your local health department for further guidance/ questions regarding your potential need to quarantine.”

The health department’s letter marks a departure in strategy by D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, who earlier this week said she was satisfied that COVID-19 safety measures were being implemented at the White House, despite receiving only a “very cursory” response to inquiries about how the outbreak was being handled, The Associated Press reported.

D.C. has 15,843 coronavirus cases and 634 related deaths as of Friday, according to city statistics.

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