Queen Elizabeth Returns to Work After Rumors of Her Death

Photo: VICTORIA JONES / POOL / AFP via Getty Images

The queen would like you to know she is definitely not dead, thank you very much. Despite what you might have heard, the British monarch is still alive and well – and on the job.

Just days after testing positive for COVID-19 (and 24 hours after being falsely pronounced “dead” by the internet), Queen Elizabeth II was back to her work-from-home schedule. She reportedly attended her weekly meeting with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday, February 23, via video. Royal reporter Omid Scobie confirmed the news on his Twitter account, writing that Buckingham Palace had verified the queen’s attendance at the meeting. Scobie also reported that the ruler had two virtual meetings scheduled for Thursday, but they have since been postponed as the queen is still experiencing cold-like symptoms from COVID-19.

If I had tested positive for COVID-19 and was subsequently declared dead by the internet, I would simply not go to work. But given the UK’s shift to a “living with COVID” strategy, it makes sense that the queen may feel pressure to be back to normal as soon as possible. On Monday, February 21, the day after Buckingham Palace confirmed the queen had tested positive, Johnson rolled out a whole array of new COVID guidelines and requirements. As part of the plan, the legal requirement to self-isolate after testing positive for COVID expires on Thursday, though it seems the queen is planning to stay in isolation throughout her recovery. Probably not a bad idea given that she’s 95 years old.

Let this be a lesson to us all: Just because we do not see someone performing public duties after being diagnosed with a very contagious virus, that does not mean they are not still alive.

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