NEW BEDFORD — New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell has announced this weekend that he has come down with COVID-19 for a second time.

Mitchell wrote in a Facebook post on Sunday morning that his symptoms are mild and he is receiving an anti-viral treatment after testing positive for coronavirus this weekend.

"I am following current CDC protocols, which require five days of isolation from the onset of symptoms, and mask wearing for five days thereafter," he wrote.

The mayor said he will refrain from making public appearances and change all in-person meetings to Zoom meetings this week.

He added that he will "regret" missing the New Bedford Half Marathon today, but noted, "I do not anticipate that my isolation will disrupt municipal services or compromise my ability to lead the city."

City Council President Ian Abreu confirmed that he will be leading the Sunday festivities instead.

His family and staff have all tested negative, according to the post.

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Mitchell last tested positive for COVID in January 2021, before many people were eligible for the vaccine.

"I do not know exactly how I contracted the disease," he wrote in the post. "The virus is still ever-present, and even if you’ve had Covid before, as I have, you can still get it again."

A new, highly contagious subvariant of the Omicron coronavirus strain, dubbed "stealth Omicron," has been causing rising COVID cases around the world — including in China and the U.S.

The mayor noted that with this new variant on the rise, "We need to be alert to the possibility that more booster shots and other precautions may be in order" soon, adding "there's no time like the present" to get a booster shot.

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