False positive COVID-19 test prevents Mayor Cantrell from attending meeting with President Biden and VP Harris


Mayor LaToya Cantrell, August 2020

NEW ORLEANS — On Friday morning, Mayor Cantrell was denied entry to a meeting with President Biden and Vice President Harris, due to White House health screening and safety protocols.

Mayor Cantrell received her first dose of the coronavirus vaccine just two days ago, on Wednesday, February 10.

The following press release was sent out from the Mayor’s Office:

“This morning at the White House, prior to meeting with President Biden, Mayor Cantrell took a screening COVID test and received a positive result. She then visited a local testing clinic in the DC area, where she took a second test – a confirmatory PCR test. The PCR test results were negative.

At no time did the Mayor display any symptoms, and she remains asymptomatic and in good spirits. She will return home as scheduled this evening.

The Mayor received her first dose of vaccine on Wednesday of this week.  The vaccine does NOT cause a positive test, as it does not contain any actual virus.  It takes time to build full immunity, and individuals are only considered to be fully immunized and 95% protected at 2 weeks after the second dose.  That is the reason that everyone needs to continue to wear masks, socially distance, and avoid large gatherings.

The Mayor was disappointed to be unable to meet with President Biden this morning, but she remains confident that the new administration will be a strong partner for New Orleans.  She looks forward to receiving her second dose of vaccine in a few weeks.”

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