US Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, who is vaccinated against COVID-19, tested positive for the virus on Tuesday morning, CNN reported, citing a statement from department spokesperson Marsha Espinosa.
"Secretary Mayorkas tested positive this morning for the COVID-19 virus after taking a test as part of routine pre-travel protocols," Espinosa said in a statement.
"Secretary Mayorkas is experiencing only mild congestion; he is fully vaccinated and will isolate and work at home per CDC protocols and medical advice. Contact tracing is underway," she added.
Mayorkas had been scheduled to travel to Colombia this week along with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, but he is now working from home. While in Bogotá, Blinken was scheduled to co-lead a meeting among government officials to address migration issues with regional partners.
This is at least the second time COVID-19 has interrupted Mayorkas' work schedule since taking office. In July, Mayorkas worked virtually after coming in close contact with a DHS employee who later tested positive for the virus. At the time, he had no symptoms and tested negative twice.
The secretary traveled to Mexico earlier this month and has participated in several in-person events in recent weeks, noted CNN. He attended an outdoor cybersecurity event last week and on Saturday, appeared at a Peace Officers Memorial Service where he stood outside alongside President Joe Biden, first lady Jill Biden and FBI Director Christopher Wray.
A White House official told CNN that "no White House principal has been determined to be a close contact of Secretary Mayorkas, given that the most recent contact was at the outdoors FOP event outside of the 48-hour close contact window."
In late September, US State Department spokesman Ned Price tested positive for COVID-19 after experiencing symptoms.
Before testing positive, Price had been in close contact with Blinken during his meetings at the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Blinken tested negative at the time.