Nov. 13 (UPI) — Rep. Don Younger of Alaska introduced through Twitter that he has examined optimistic for COVID-19.

“I’ve examined optimistic for COVID-19,” the 87-year-old Republican politician stated in an announcement on Thursday. “I’m feeling sturdy, following correct protocols, working from dwelling in Alaska and ask for privateness at the moment.”

Younger, the longest-serving Republican in congressional historical past and the oldest member in both chamber, was re-elected to Congress final week for a 25th time period.

He has beforehand downplayed the chance of the coronavirus, and in March instructed a gaggle of senior residents that the specter of the “beer virus” was overblown, seemingly in reference to the similarities between the identify of the coronavirus and the favored beer, Corona.

“They name it the coronavirus. I name it the beer virus. How do you want that,” he stated, Anchorage Every day Information reported. “It assaults us senior residents. I am one in every of you. I nonetheless say we have now to as a nation and state go forth with on a regular basis actions.”

Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy and Sen. Lisa Murkowski each despatched Younger properly needs through Twitter.

“Alaska is with you, Don!” Dunleavy stated through Twitter.

In accordance with knowledge from the state’s Well being and Social Providers Coronavirus Response Division, infections have been steadily climbing since September and Alaska reported a every day file of some 600 instances earlier this month.

The division stated there are 20,688 infections, 520 hospitalizations and 96 deaths as a result of virus.

In a video message on Thursday, Dunleavy instructed the general public that the virus was quickly spreading all through Alaskan communities and issued a sequence of measures, together with ordering residents to earn a living from home, if attainable, to stymie the illness’s unfold.