Zeman was in contact with an infected employee of the presidential office

President Miloš Zeman, who tested positive for the coronavirus on Thursday, was tested for the disease after being in contact with another person who tested positive for the coronavirus, said Jitka Zinke, a spokeswoman for the Central Military Hospital. Boris Šťastný of Senior Home Group, the company caring for Zeman, said the woman was an employee of the presidential office. The President was taken back to the Central Military Hospital on Thursday and given monoclonal antibodies.

The Senior Home Group tested everyone in Lány who had contact with the President, heading to the castle from the Central Hospital, with an antigen test, a so-called semi-quantitative sampling. According to Šťastný, this is a more sensitive antigen test. This is how the border test was detected in a female employee of the presidential office who should have been in contact with the President in the previous days, Šťastný said. The tests were then extended to PCR, which was positive both for her and later for the President.

“As part of the regime’s measures, we tested everyone who would come into contact with the President with an antigen test, and already in the morning, before his arrival, we found one positive catch in Lány. We tested the President in the afternoon using the PCR method, and his test came back positive, although he was asymptomatic, ” Šťastný confirmed.  The Senior HomeGroup from the Penta Hospitals group received the medical documentation and the rehabilitation plan set by the ÚVN.

“After consulting with his attending physician, Mr. Zavoral, the president went back to the ÚVN to monitor his condition and administer monoclonal antibodies, which is standard procedure,” he added.

Jitka Zinke, a spokeswoman for the Central Military Hospital, said, “Preventive testing is a common practice when a president is admitted to a health care facility in a home setting, and he was also tested because of contact with the person who tested positive.” She said Zeman has no symptoms of illness and has been vaccinated with three doses of the vaccine. “The administration of the monoclonal antibodies is primarily for preventive purposes; after the administration of the monoclonal product, the patient will remain hospitalized for observation,” Zinke added.

She described how each visit to the President had to provide proof of vaccination, a COVID, or a PCR test no older than 72 hours. She could be with the patient for no more than 30 minutes. “No more than two people could be present, and the visitor was always instructed to wear a respirator for the duration of the visit. The ICU staff was not present during the visits,” Zinke said, describing the circumstances of the President’s visits.

Zeman has spent the past 46 days at the Central Military Hospital. On Thursday morning, he was released to Lány at his request. The hospital said it disclaimed responsibility for his condition and informed his family and co-workers of the possible risks. In the afternoon, Zeman was tested for coronavirus, and after consulting with the President’s attending physician, Miroslav Zavoral, he was taken back to the hospital. He spent several hours in Lány. It is not clear when he will be rereleased from the hospital.