Top health officials are quarantining after being exposed.
In the latest sign of worry that the coronavirus could be spreading through the senior ranks of the Trump administration, three top public health officials have begun partial or full self-quarantine for two weeks after coming into contact with someone who has tested positive for the coronavirus.
Representatives for Dr. Robert Redfield, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Dr. Stephen Hahn, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, confirmed the precautions on Saturday. Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, confirmed a CNN report that he had begun a “modified quarantine” given what he called a “low risk” contact.
The actions come after the disclosure on Friday that Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary, Katie Miller, tested positive for the virus. Ms. Miller has attended numerous meetings of the White House’s coronavirus task force, which also includes Dr. Redfield, Dr. Hahn and Dr. Fauci.
Dr. Fauci will telework from home and wear a mask for 14 days, he told CNN, possibly visiting his office at the National Institutes of Health when he will be the only person present. He tested negative for the virus on Friday and plans to be tested daily from now on.
Dr. Redfield also had a “low-risk exposure” with a person at the White House, on May 6, and will be teleworking for the next two weeks, Benjamin Haynes, a C.D.C. spokesman, said in a statement. Dr. Redfield “is feeling fine, and has no symptoms,” he said, adding that if Dr. Redfield needed to visit the White House for official business he would follow C.D.C. safety guidelines for essential workers who may have been exposed to the virus. Those guidelines call for temperature checks, screening for symptoms, masks as well as social distancing.
A spokeswoman for the F.D.A. said that Dr. Hahn had sent a note to his staff on Friday disclosing his contact with a person who had tested positive for Covid-19 and that, in accordance with C.D.C. guidelines, “is now in self-quarantine for the next two weeks.”
“Dr. Hahn immediately took a diagnostic test and tested negative for the virus,” added the spokeswoman, Stephanie Caccomo.
She and Mr. Haynes did not identify the person or people to whom Dr. Redfield and Dr. Hahn had been exposed, although the C.D.C. statement indicated that it was a person “at the White House.” The CNN report confirmed by Dr. Fauci said that his contact of concern was with a White House staff member.
The White House said this week that a military valet to President Trump had also tested positive for the virus.
Senator Lamar Alexander, Republican of Tennessee, who oversees the Senate’s health committee, said in a statement Saturday that the White House had agreed to give Dr. Hahn and Dr. Redfield a…