President Donald Trump made a surprise last minute visit to his supporters outside Walter Reed Medical Center on Sunday and informed his hospital room to thank the cheering loyalists despite being infected with coronavirus, a potentially fatal disease.
The President sat in an SUV and was driven by the screaming, applauding crowds. He waved to them from the car and was wearing a face mask.
A person wearing full personal protective equipment, including a face shield, was in the passenger seat. Secret service agents were in the car too. The president went to the hospital Friday night after testing positive for the coronavirus.
A doctor who works as attending physician at Walter Reed criticized the president for the visit, saying the risk of COVID transmission inside the SUV was "as high as outside medical procedures."
"This President's SUV is not only bulletproof, but also hermetically sealed against chemical attack," wrote Dr. James Phillipsy, a George Washington University doctor who is also attending a Walter Reed, on Twitter.
& # 39; The risk of COVID19 transmission inside is as high as outside of medical procedures. The irresponsibility is amazing. My thoughts are forced to gamble with the Secret Service, ”he added.
The White House said the president made a short trip and then returned to the presidential suite at the hospital.
"President Trump took a short car ride at the last minute to wave to his supporters outside and has now returned to Walter Reed's presidential suite," White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere said in a statement.
It is unclear whether a visit will pay off Trump's trip politically. While it delighted its supporters, most voters give the president negative remarks for its handling of the pandemic. He's also in the polls six weeks before the election. In an NBC News / Wall Street Journal poll on Sunday, he was 14 points behind Democratic rival Joe Biden, 53% to 39% – the first time his support for Biden fell below 40 percent.
President Donald Trump briefly left his room at Walter Reed Medical Center to thank the supporters posted outside the hospital
President Trump was driven by his supporters where he waved to them from the SUV and he wore a face mask during the short trip
President Trump's supporters waved American flags and Make America Great Again advertising signs outside Walter Reed Hospital
Trump surprised her with a short visit on Sunday evening
The crowd has gathered outside the hospital to cheer Trump and shout for support
A supporter waved a "We (Heart) Trump" sign
Many of the supporters did not wear face masks
Trump's supporters gathered outside the Bethesda, Maryland hospital, and many did not wear face masks.
People carried 'Make America Great Again' paraphernalia, waved campaign signs, and raised American flags.
One woman waved a "We (heart) and Mr. Trump" sign, while another man waved a "We (heart) Trump" sign.
The president posted a video on his Twitter account shortly before his outdoor visit indicating he was about to leave.
He also said he visited soldiers at the military hospital and learned a lot about COVID, which has infected more than 7 million Americans.
He began his brief remarks by thanking the medical staff who looked after him, adding that he had "met some of the soldiers".
The president, who tested positive for COVID, a potentially fatal disease, did not say what precautions were being taken for his meetings.
"I also think we will give some of the great patriots a little surprise," he said, indicating his outside visit. "They have Trump flags and they love our country so I'm not telling anyone but you, but I'm going to make a little surprise visit so maybe I'll get there before you see me."
He said he has learned a lot about the coronavirus since he was hospitalized on Friday.
& # 39; It was a very interesting trip. I learned a lot about COVID. I learned by actually going to school. This is the right school, ”he said. “In the meantime, we love the US and we love what happens. Thank you. & # 39;
The president's doctors said on Sunday that he could be released from Walter Reed as early as Monday as Trump's top doctor went on to explain at length that he had been given a steroid and received oxygen to treat COVID-19.
"Our plan for today is for him to eat and drink, get out of bed as much as possible, and be mobile," said Dr. Brian Garibaldi, one of the doctors on Trump's team. "And if he continues to look and feel the way he does today, we hope we can plan a discharge to the White House tomorrow, where he can continue his treatment course."
He also revealed that Trump would continue to take doses of remdesivir, a broad spectrum antiviral drug, and dexamethasone, a steroid, regardless of whether he stays with Walter Reed or is brought to the White House.
The President's Chief Medical Officer, Navy Commander Sean Conley, admitted trying to come up with a rosy description of the President's condition.
“I tried to reflect the optimistic attitude of the team about the president and his illness. I didn't want to give any information that might reverse the course of the disease, ”Conley said. “And it was like trying to hide something that wasn't necessarily true. The fact is, he's really fine. & # 39;
Conley also denied guilt during the briefing, claiming there was some confusion about Trump's condition because of the misrepresentation of Chief of Staff Mark Meadow's comments. "The chief and I work side by side," Conley said over Meadows. "And I think his statement was misinterpreted."
“What he meant was that 24 hours ago when he and I checked the President, there was this momentary episode of high fever. And this temporary drop in saturation that caused us to act expediently to get him here, ”he said of the President's swift move from the White House to Walter Reed on Friday.
"Fortunately, this was a very temporary, limited episode," he continued in a briefing with a press outside the hospital center. & # 39; A few hours later he was up again, mild again. I'm not going to speculate on what this limited episode was all about so early in the course. But he's fine. & # 39;
Mike Pence and second lady Karen Pence both tested negative for coronavirus on Sunday, paving the way for the vice president to take power in the event the president becomes incapacitated.
Trump tweeted on Sunday afternoon, writing, “I really appreciate all of the fans and supporters outside of the hospital. The fact is, they really love our country and see us making it bigger than ever before! & # 39;
Donald Trump's doctors announced on Sunday that they were treating the president with a steroid and oxygenating him on Saturday as they were concerned about the rapid progression of the virus
"If he continues to look and feel as good as he does today, we hope we can plan a discharge to the White House tomorrow, where he can continue his treatment course," said Garibaldi
The President's Doctor Dr. Sean Conley, a Navy commander, had to explain during the Sunday briefing that there was some confusion about Trump's condition because Chief of Staff Mark Meadow's comments had been "misinterpreted".
Meadows v. Conley: Meadows rubbed his forehead (left) on Sunday as Conley spoke to reporters outside of Walter Reed. & # 39; The President's vital signs for the past 24 hours have been very worrying and the next 48 hours will be critical to his upkeep. We are still not on a clear path to a full recovery, ”Meadows told reporters anonymously, and it was later revealed that he was the source of the comments
The masked doctors gave their second update on Trump's condition within two days when questions emerged about conflicting statements about the progress of the disease and its treatment
WHAT IS DEXAMETHASONE?
Oxford University researchers announced in June that the steroid drug dexamethasone – which costs just over $ 3 for treatment – reduces the risk of death for infected patients on ventilators by up to 35 percent and for anyone who has oxygen at any point needed to decrease one fifth.
After the news, World Health Organization (WHO) chiefs said they would update their guidelines for treatment for Covid-19 to include dexamethasone.
WHO wrote: “It was tested in the UK's national clinical study RECOVERY on hospitalized patients with COVID-19 and has benefits for critically ill patients.
"Based on preliminary evidence shared with WHO (and now available in preprint), treatment has been shown to reduce mortality by approximately one-third in ventilator patients and lower mortality in patients who require oxygen only lowered by about a fifth. "
It didn't seem to help less sick patients.
The researchers estimated that the drug would prevent one death for every eight patients treated with breathing apparatus and one for every 25 patients treated with supplemental oxygen alone.
The steroid drug is a type of anti-inflammatory drug that is used to treat a wide variety of medical conditions.
It is given by injection or tablet once a day and is sold under the brand names Ozurdex and Baycadron.
In coronavirus patients, the steroid reduces inflammation in the lungs caused by an overreaction of the immune system.
It is believed that one in 10 symptomatic Covid-19 patients will have the nasty symptom known as acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS).
ARDS causes the immune system to become overactive and attack healthy cells in the lungs.
This makes breathing difficult and the body eventually struggles to get enough oxygen to vital organs.
Dexamethasone was first made in 1957 and approved for medical use in 1961.
The steroid is also used to treat conditions that cause inflammation, conditions related to the activity of the immune system, and hormone deficiencies.
- allergic reaction
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Flare-ups from bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis
- multiple sclerosis
- Pre-treatment for chemotherapy to reduce inflammation and side effects of cancer drugs
- Adrenal insufficiency (a condition where the adrenal glands do not make enough hormones)
Dexamethasone is known to cause a number of mild to moderate side effects, including vomiting, heartburn, anxiety, high blood pressure, muscle weakness, and insomnia.
Conley, a Navy commander and doctor to the president, announced during the briefing that Trump was being treated with the steroid dexamethasone after a drop in oxygen levels on Saturday.
& # 39; In the course of his illness, the President has seen two episodes of temporary drops in his oxygen saturation. We discussed the reasons for this and whether we would intervene at all. As a team's statement, based primarily on the diagnosis schedule, that we are initiating dexamethasone, ”Conley said.
The doctor then outlined the schedule for Trump's treatment and Friday's decision to move him to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center just hours after the president announced that he and First Lady Melania Trump had tested positive for coronavirus.
& # 39; Thursday night through Friday morning when I got out of bed the President was fine with only mild symptoms and his oxygen was in his high 90s. Late Friday morning when I got back to bed, the president had a high fever and his oxygen levels temporarily dropped below 94 percent, ”Conley said.
"Given these two developments, I was concerned about the potential for rapid disease progression," he continued. "I recommended that the president try supplemental oxygen."
Conley said Trump was very convinced that he didn't need it. Wasn't short of breath. He was tired, had a fever and that was it. & # 39;
He said that after a minute of oxygen, Trump's levels were back above 95 percent – but he kept the president informed for about an hour.
Conley stated that the president's oxygen levels hadn't dropped into the 80s, reiterating that he got up shortly after the "passing" episode.
Meadows received a backlash on Saturday after it was revealed that his comments on Trump's condition contradicted the assessments of others, including the president's.
& # 39; The President's vital signs for the past 24 hours have been very worrying and the next 48 hours will be critical to his upkeep. We are still not on a clear path to a full recovery, ”Meadows told reporters anonymously, and it was later revealed that he was the source of the comments.
Meadows' comments came shortly after a White House medical team said Trump's condition was improving and he was already talking about returning to the White House.
One doctor said Trump told them, "I feel like I could get out of here today."
In an update on Saturday, Conlety wrote, “Tonight he completed his second dose of remdesivir without complications. He stays fever-free the whole day and without additional oxygen with a degree of saturation between 96% and 98%. & # 39;
He spent most of the afternoon doing business and was in the medical suite with no trouble. Although the team is not out of the woods yet, it remains cautiously optimistic, ”the White House doctor continued.
"Tomorrow's plan is to continue monitoring between doses of remdesivir, closely monitoring its clinical status, while fully supporting its performance of the President's duties."
A few hours later, White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere posted a picture of Trump working from the hospital until late at night.
The new comments from the president's medical team on Sunday come as Trump's campaign advisors Stephen Miller and Steve Cortes claimed the president was eager to get back on the running on Sunday, even after Conley said on Saturday he was not "out of the woods." ".
Miller, the campaign's senior advisor, said he spoke to Trump recently and the president told him he would defeat this virus … and our campaign will defeat this virus.
"As soon as he's out of the hospital, he's ready to go back to campaign," NBC's Miller Chuck Todd told Meet the Press during a Sunday morning interview. "He sounded pretty energetic."
“But he said something else that I thought was important,” Miller said, “and that should be careful, and that should remind people to wash their hands, use hand sanitizer, and make sure you do socially can not distance, distance to wear a mask. And I thought this was pretty important news and a reminder for the rest of the country. & # 39;
Another senior campaign advisor, Cortes, affirmed the president's fitness during an interview with Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday.
"He's fine," said Cortes.
"We spoke with the president yesterday, we mean campaign officers," said Cortes. "He was more optimistic and confident than ever before."
He added: "This president will recover, we are very confident of that."
How Mark Meadows enraged Trump by telling reporters that his "vital signs" are very worrying on a confidential health update
Chief of Staff Mark Meadows' revelation to reporters that Donald Trump's "livelihoods are very worrying" angered the president and prompted him to post an optimistic video update on his condition on Saturday.
The New York Times claimed that people close to the situation said Trump was angry at the comments and acted to counter the perception that he was very ill.
The president uploaded the four-minute video to his Twitter page on Saturday night saying he was "much better" and fighting the coronavirus as his doctor optimistically updated his symptoms.
Even earlier in the day, Meadows was caught asking to go off files with White House reporters after an "anonymous" source revealed the true extent of the president's condition.
& # 39; The President's vital signs for the past 24 hours have been very worrying and the next 48 hours will be critical to his upkeep. We are still not on a clear path to a full recovery, "Meadows told reporters on the condition that he could not be identified.
He was later named as the source of the quote.
Chief of Staff Mark Meadows' revelation to reporters that Donald Trump's "vital signs are very worrisome" angered the president and prompted him to post an optimistic video update on his condition on Saturday
Meadows' comments came shortly after a White House medical team said Trump's condition was improving and he was already talking about returning to the White House.
One doctor said Trump told them, "I feel like I could get out of here today."
Meadows didn't clear up the discrepancy in his comments.
A Trump adviser, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the president was not pleased to hear of Meadows' initial remarks, according to Reuters.
Hours later, the president posted a video from the hospital fighting Covid-19. He said he would improve and be "back soon" – but acknowledging the crucial days ahead would be "the real test".
Trying to reassure the public that he wasn't suffering from severe coronavirus symptoms, Trump called his treatment "miracles from God" as he worked to counter Meadows' comments.
“I came here and I didn't feel so good. I feel a lot better now, ”he said from his business suite at Walter Reed Military Hospital. "We're working hard to get myself all back … I think I'll be back soon and look forward to ending the campaign the way it started."
Trump appeared relaxed in a blue suit and open-collar jacket, admitting that there was uncertainty about the course of the disease, which can hit patients' recovery hard without warning.
“I'm starting to feel good. You don't know in the next few days, I think this is the real test so we'll see what happens in the next few days. & # 39;
A few hours later, White House deputy press secretary Judd Deere posted a picture of Trump working from the hospital until late at night.
The video came after Meadows' previous comments spread and sparked concerns about how ill the president is, despite optimistic updates from his personal doctor.
Meadows quickly tried to step back as the news spread, telling Reuters shortly after that Trump was "very well" and that doctors were indeed happy with his vital signs.
& # 39; The President is doing very well. He is up and asking for documents for review. Doctors are very happy with his vital functions. I met him several times today on a variety of subjects, ”Meadows said.
He made a third comment on the president's condition to Fox News on Saturday night, in which the chief of staff confirmed that there was cause for concern when the president was hospitalized on Friday night.
The White House had said that Trump was traveling to Walter Reed Military Medical Center out of "caution" and would continue working from them for "a few days" while he underwent tests.
“He was really worried about it yesterday morning. He had a fever and his blood oxygen levels were dropping quickly, ”Meadows told Fox's Judge Jeanie.
Still, he added that Trump's condition had improved.
& # 39; He is doing very well. Based on the current outcome, I am very, very optimistic, ”added Meadows.
"He has improved tremendously since yesterday," Meadows continued after saying again that doctors were "very concerned."
"We are still not on a clear path to a full recovery," he added.
Trump announced on Twitter overnight on Thursday that he and First Lady Melania tested positive for coronavirus when the two took a test after it was revealed that President's aide Hope Hicks had received a positive diagnosis hours earlier.
Trump's chief medical officer, Navy Commander Sean Conley, and other doctors caught up on the president's condition during a briefing on Saturday.
"While the team is not out of the woods yet, it remains cautiously optimistic," said Conley, adding that Trump moved around his medical suite without difficulty during his business operations.
The White House doctor also said Trump had shown "clinical indications" for coronavirus as early as Thursday afternoon.
There are conflicting reports and statements as to whether the president has needed supplemental oxygen at any point since arriving at Walter Reed on Friday, or how high his fever has reached.
Trump submitted his own report on his health on Saturday night and posted a video of working in a white button without a tie from the hospital's presidential suite and opening the first button.
"I'm starting to feel good," the president said in a video posted on Twitter as he pledged to fight the virus for COVID-19 patients "around the world".
Full minutes of Sunday's medical briefing about Trump
SEAN CONLEY: Good morning.
Since we last spoke, the president has continued to improve. As with any illness, there are frequent ups and downs as the course progresses, especially when a patient is being watched so closely 24 hours a day. We review and discuss each finding against existing science and literature and weigh the risks and benefits of each intervention, the timing, and the effects of a delay.
During the course of his illness, the President has experienced two episodes of temporary drops in his oxygen saturation. We discussed the reasons for this and whether we would intervene at all. As a team determination based on the schedule from the initial diagnosis that we initiated dexamethasone.
I would like to take this opportunity because given the speculation about the course of the disease in the last few days you are informed about the course of the disease. Thursday evening through Friday morning when I got out of bed, the President was fine. With only mild symptoms and his oxygen was in his high 90s.
Late on Friday morning when I returned to bed, the President had a high fever and his oxygen saturation momentarily dropped below 94%. Given these two developments, I was concerned about the potential for rapid progression of the disease. I recommended that the president try supplemental oxygen and see how he would react. He was pretty much convinced that he didn't need it. He wasn't out of breath. He was tired, had a fever and that was it. After about a minute, his saturation level was just two liters at over 95%. Maybe he stayed there for about an hour and was gone and gone.
Later that day, when the team was here by bed, the President had stood up and moved around the residence with only mild symptoms. Even so, everyone agreed that the best course of action was to move to Walter Reed for more thorough assessment and monitoring. I want dr Dr. Invite Dooley to discuss corn plans.
SEAN DOOLEY: Thank you, Dr. Conley. As a quick clinical update on the state of the President, I want to reiterate my comments yesterday about how proud I am to be part of this multidisciplinary team of clinical professionals behind me, and what an honor it is to look after the President here at Walter Reed National Military medical center.
The president keeps improving. He has had no fever since Friday morning. His vital functions are stable. From a pulmonary point of view, he remains in the room air this morning and does not complain of shortness of breath or other significant respiratory problems. He walks on his own and walks through the medical department of the White House without restriction or disability.
& # 39; Our continued monitoring of his heart, liver, and kidney function continues to show or improve findings. I will now Dr. Garabaldi of Johns Hopkins handed over to discuss therapeutics and our plan for today.
BRIAN GARIBALDI: Thank you, Dr. Dooley. I wanted to reiterate what an honor and privilege it is to care for the President and to be part of such a talented team here at Walter Reed. The president completed his second dose of remdesivir last night. He took this infusion well. We looked for possible side effects.
He didn't have any that we can tell. Liver and kidney function remained normal. We are still planning a five day remdesivir course. In response to transient low oxygen levels, such as Dr. Conley discussed, we have started dexamethasone therapy and he received his first dose of it yesterday and we plan to continue for the time being.
Today he is fine. He was up and down. Our plan is to get him to eat and drink, get out of bed as much as possible, and keep the torques mobile. If he continues to look and feel the way he does today, we hope to plan a release to the White House tomorrow to continue his treatment course. Many Thanks. I'll get it to Dr. Conley passed for any questions.
CONLEY: Just a moment, please. The President wanted me to tell you how proud he is of the group, what an honor it is for him to have their care here, surrounded by incredible talent, academic directors, chairs, internationally renowned doctors and medical professionals. Let me reiterate how pleased we are all with the President's recovery. With that I take up your questions.
REPORTER: Dr. Conley, you said there were two instances where he had drops of oxygen. Can you walk us through the second one? I also have a question for the lung specialist afterwards.
CONLEY: There was another episode yesterday where it fell 93%. He never felt out of breath. We saw it and it returned. We have assessed all of this and given the schedule he is on in the disease process, we have tried to maximize everything we can do for him and we have debated whether we would even start. The dexamethasone. And we decided that if this happened, the potential benefits at the beginning of the course likely outweighed the risks at that point.
REPORTER: Did you give him a second round of extra oxygen yesterday?
CONLEY: I'd have to check with the nursing staff. If he did, it was very limited. But he's out of oxygen and the only oxygen I ordered that we provided that Friday morning.
REPORTER: What time was it yesterday?
CONLEY: Yesterday – what was yesterday?
REPORTER: The second incident.
CONLEY: The second incident. It was during the day, yes, yesterday morning.
REPORTER: The President's current blood oxygen levels, that is my first question to you, Dr. Conley.
REPORTER: What did the X-ray and CT scans show? Are there any signs of pneumonia? Are there any signs of lung involvement? Or damage to the lungs?
CONLEY: We're following all of this. There are some expected results, but no major clinical concerns.
REPORTER: Why start him, Dr. Conley on … Has the oxygen level ever gone below 90?
CONLEY: We don't have any recordings of it.
REPORTER: What about in the White House or here, anything under 90, just to answer your question?
CONLEY: It was under 94%. It wasn't the low 80s or anything.
REPORTER: Yesterday you told us the President was in great shape and in good shape, minutes after your press conference, Mark Meadows told reporters that the President's vital signs had been very worrying for the past 24 hours. Simple question for the American people whose statements about the health of the President should be believed?
CONLEY: The boss and I work side by side. I think his statement was misinterpreted. What he meant was that 24 hours ago, when he and I checked the President, there was this momentary episode of high fever and that temporary drop in satiety that made us take appropriate action to get him here. Thankfully, this was really a very temporary, limited episode. A few hours later he was up again, mild again. I'm not going to speculate what this limited episode was about so early in the course, but he's fine.
REPORTER: What are the expected results in the lungs and why is the President not wearing a mask in the videos and photos posted?
CONLEY: The President always wears a mask when he's around, and we wear our N-95, full ppe. He's the patient, and if we can when he goes public, we move him to other people when he's not in full swing. I assure you that while he is under my care he will be wearing a mask.
REPORTER: Is the room under pressure?
CONLEY: I won't go into details of his care.
REPORTER: Can you answer the question about lung function? The lung function question, Dr. Conley.
CONLEY: I'm sorry.
REPORTER: The lung function question, can you talk about it?
CONLEY: I would say, like every patient, we do pulmonary spirometry on them. He's making the most of it. We told him, see what you can do, it's over 2500 milliliters every time. He's fine.
REPORTER: Why did you hesitate until this day to reveal that the President had been given oxygen?
CONLEY: I was trying to reflect the optimistic attitude that the team, the president, his Isness course had. – had illness. I didn't want to give any information that could steer the course of the disease in a different direction. And it turned out that we were trying to hide something that wasn't necessarily true, and there you have it. He is – the fact is, he's really fine. He's responding, and as the team said, if all goes well, we'll start planning the discharge back to the White House. That's it. Thanks, people.
Senior Trump campaign advisor Jason Miller said Sunday the president was "ready to get back on the campaign trail".
Steve Cortes (right), senior advisor for campaigns, told Fox News, & # 39; Chris Wallace (left): & # 39; He was more optimistic and confident than ever before & # 39; and claimed: & # 39; This president will recover. & # 39;
The comments come the morning after White House Doctor Navy Commander Dr. Sean Conley, in a briefing, said Trump was "not out of the woods".
The 74-year-old president added that the treatments he receives are "miracles from God" since Melania's symptoms are not as severe as his own.
"We're both fine," said Trump in the four-minute video that shows pictures of him working from the medical center.
& # 39; Melania handles it really well. As you've probably read, she's a little younger than me, just a little, ”he said of his 50-year-old wife.
“And that's why we know the disease, we know the situation with age compared to younger people and Melania statistically treats it the way it should be treated, and that makes me very happy, and it makes the country very happy, but me it’s also We’re fine and I think we’ll achieve a very good result again. & # 39;
He said in the video that he was feeling better and "will be back soon".
Trump posted a video of him on Saturday from the presidential suite at Walter Reed, saying he will "be back soon".
Feeling Better: "I'm starting to feel good," Trump said on a Twitter video as he pledged to fight the virus "around the world" for COVID-19 patients.
"I spoke to the president yesterday afternoon and he's in a very good mood," said Miller. "Both Bill Stepien, the campaign manager, and I spoke to the president for about half an hour and checked all the campaign updates."
Miller also said he believed the campaign, the White House and the medical team are only taking "very precautionary" steps to ensure the president's health.
It appears that the two "spreader" events may have been when Trump announced Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the White House Supreme Court last Saturday and during his rally in Minnesota on Wednesday.
Hicks, who had traveled to the rally with the president this week, tested positive for coronavirus hours after the event – where she was in close proximity to the president and several of his White House staff and campaigning.
Several people who participated in Trump's pre-debate debate last week, including former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and former White House adviser Kellyanne Conway, tested positive for coronavirus.
Miller told ABC News & # 39; & # 39; This week & # 39; & # 39; on Sunday morning that he tested negative on Friday – and as Senior Advisor to President Stephen Miller and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who also took part in the preparation of the debate.
THE CRUCIAN QUESTIONS ABOUT TRUMPS HEALTH
After a Sunday briefing at Walter Reed Medical Center treating President Donald Trump, some key health questions remain from the President's medical team, led by his personal physician, Navy Commander Dr. Sean Conley, unanswered
WHAT DID WE LEARN ABOUT TRUMPS HEALTH ON SUNDAY?
President Trump's oxygen levels have dropped twice since his diagnosis, but never below 90 percent, said Dr. Sean Conley on Sunday and also admitted for the first time that the president had been given supplemental oxygen. A normal oxygen level is between 95 and 100 percent.
Conley said the president was given supplemental oxygen for about an hour at the White House Friday, and the drop – along with a "high" fever – was part of Trump's decision to see Walter Reed. He couldn't tell if the president received supplemental oxygen on Saturday. “I would have to ask the nursing staff. If so, it was very limited, ”Conley said. Conley escaped the question of whether the president was getting supplemental oxygen on Saturday.
In addition, Dr. Brian Garibaldi, a lung criticism specialist on the President's medical team who practices at John Hopkins, said Trump received a second dose of the experimental drug remdesivir along with a first dose of dexamethasone, a steroid, on Saturday. He noted that the President is not showing any side effects "that we can see".
Dexamethasone has been shown to help patients seriously ill with COVID, but it is usually not used in mild cases. In could be harmful early on as it could dampen the body's immune response. On September 2, the World Health Organization recommended that the steroid only be given to patients with "severe and critical Covid-19".
To what extent was Trumpf given supplemental oxygen and when?
Dr. Conley announced publicly for the first time on Sunday that "the President has experienced two episodes of transient drops in oxygen saturation in the course of his illness." A decline in the body's ability to carry oxygen through the blood is one of the dangerous complications associated with COVID-19. Doctors like to see the number above 95 percent.
In response, the team decided to initiate the use of dexamethasone, a steroid and anti-inflammatory agent. Trump's first dose of the drug, which was added to his numerous other drugs, came on Saturday. The president's oxygen levels were in the high 90s Thursday night and Friday morning, Conley said.
But later on Friday morning, oxygen saturation levels "temporarily dropped below 94 percent," Conley said. At this point Conley recommended, "We'll try some extra oxygen to see how it would react." He was pretty much convinced that he didn't need it. He wasn't out of breath. He was tired, had a fever and that was it. And after about a minute, with only two liters, his saturation level was back above 95 percent, ”he said.
"Maybe he stayed at it for about an hour and it was all over," said Conley. When interviewed, Conley said there was "another episode" on Saturday where the level dropped 93 percent. He never feels out of breath. We saw it and it came up again. "
Conley was asked up-close if Trump was given a second oxygen supply on Saturday and evaded.
"I need to check with the nursing staff," said Conley, who oversees Trump's care. "I don't think so – when he did it was very, very limited. But he has no oxygen. And the only oxygen I ordered was early Friday morning."
When asked when the second incident occurred, he said it was "during the day – yesterday morning". His vague and sometimes contradicting comments went well beyond what he was ready to say on Saturday when he refused to answer whether Trump ever had oxygen during his early battle with COVID-19.
When he was depressed on Saturday he said, "He is out of oxygen right now." When asked if Trump had received any, he said, "He doesn't need any this morning. That's right." Then he said, "At the moment, all the signs are that he will run out of oxygen in the future."
Conley pressed again on whether Trump had ever been given oxygen and said, "He, he's out of oxygen right now."
"I see, I know you keep saying now, but should we read into the fact that he had been before?" Continued a reporter.
"He was out of oxygen yesterday and today," said Conley.
This statement contradicts his Sunday statement that the president was given oxygen on Friday morning.
HOW DO DOCTORS PLAN TO RELEASE TRUMP WHEN IT'S ON A STEROID USED FOR VENTILATION PATIENTS IN THE ICU AND REMDESEVIR.
Garibaldi said the president "continues to look and feel as good as it does today. We hope to be planning a layoff tomorrow." What has not been clarified, however, is how the president will continue his treatment of drugs that are normally only given in hospitals. President Trump received a second dose of remdesvir on Sunday, an antiviral drug that his medical team says has been temporarily approved by the FDA to treat severe cases of COVID. The drug that is injected into the arm is only intended to be given in a hospital. A typical course lasts five days. Additionally, the president's doctors said he had been given an initial dose of dexamethasone, a steroid that was found to significantly reduce the risk of death in patients given a ventilator.
DO WE KNOW THE FULL TRUTH ABOUT TRUMPS HEALTH?
Among the questions that were not answered during the President's health briefing, how low was his blood oxygen, is he showing signs of pneumonia, has heart and lung damage, and is he in a negative pressure room? Also, Conley said the president's temperature was "high" but did not say how high it was. When asked about President Trump's oxygen levels, Conley said, “It was below 94%. It wasn't the low 80s or anything. & # 39; He was asked about the damage to the President's heart or lungs that could occur in COVID patients, but said only that it was being followed up. "There are some expected results, but nothing of greater clinical concern," said Conley. He declined to answer some specific questions about the president's health and treatment, including whether Trump was in a negative pressure room, which may help fight the spread of COVID. "I won't go into the details of his care," Conley said. The White House still didn't respond the last time the president tested negative for COVID.
DID DOCTORS TELL THE TRUTH ALONE?
Conley was asked why he and White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows were giving different pictures of the president's health on Saturday. Conley painted a positive picture and Meadows said the president had gone through a "very worrying" period. "I tried to reflect the team's optimism about the president and his illness," said Conley. He added that he did not want to give any information that could steer the course of the disease in any other direction. And it was like trying to hide something that wasn't necessarily true. & # 39; Dr. Conley grinned on Saturday as he repeatedly told Trump as "now non-oxygenated". Pushing again and again that the president ever had it, he said, "Thursday, no oxygen, none at this moment, and yesterday with the team while we were all here he was out of oxygen." About an hour later, the New York Times and Associated Press reported that Trump was being given oxygen at the White House residence. There was no official denial or confirmation, but Dr. Conley had left that option open. Why he would not confirm it is unknown.
HAS THE PRESIDENT OR ANOTHER APPOINTED DOCTOR NOT COMPLETELY TRANSPARENT?
That is just unknown. Dr. Conley had never spoken to reporters before Saturday and first read from a prepared statement on Saturday and Sunday. He has had a long time with the President, and as a patient, the President has a veto over any aspect of the disclosure of his medical information, such as: B. when and how he was diagnosed, his oxygen consumption and his maximum temperature. At Walter Reed's, Mark Meadows, White House Chief of Staff, is also present. He controls Dr. Conley, who is in the military chain of command, unofficial, is however a member of the Cabinet and is considered empowered to act on behalf of the President to control the release of information.
WHAT TEMPERATURE DID THE PRESIDENT'S FEVER INDICATE?
This simple question has not been answered. On Sunday, Dr. Conley, Trump had a "high" fever but didn't say what it was. It's a critical clinical indication, but Dr. Conley would only say on Saturday that he had been fever free for 24 hours since Friday morning. A Vanity Fair report said it reached 103F early on Friday morning.
DOES THE PRESIDENT HAVE HEART OR LUNG DAMAGE?
Dr. Conley was asked about heart and lung damage that can occur in COVID patients but said these would be followed up. "There are some expected results, but no major clinical concerns," said Conley. On Saturday he said, “We're following all of this. We do ultrasound every day. We do daily laboratory work. The team is following it all. & # 39; But that doesn't mean whether his lungs are damaged. & # 39; He just ignored a question about Trump's heart.
DO WE KNOW EVERY DRUG OR TREATMENT HE HAS TAKEN?
The White House detailed drugs Trump made in two statements. On Friday afternoon it was said that he had received the experimental Regeneron antibody "Cocktail" as well as zinc, vitamin D and the histamine blocker famotidine. Late on Friday evening, a statement from Dr. Conley said he received the antiviral remdesvir, and on Sunday doctors said Trump received a second dose. Additionally, Dr. Brian Garibaldi, Trump received a first dose of dexamethasone, a steroid, on Saturday. Trump had previously taken hydroxychloroquine in late May and early June, although its use at the time was questionable at best and risky at worst. In June, Dr. Conley, Trump take three daily medications: 40 mg rosuvastatin, a statin; 1 mg finasteride, the hair loss drug commonly marketed as Propecia; and 81 mg aspirin.
DO WE KNOW ALL THE PRESIDENT'S TERMS AND CONDITIONS?
We don't know if we're going to do it. The last medical report in June said he was clinically obsessed but had health cholesterol, resting heart rate and blood pressure, normal kidney, liver and thyroid function, normal blood counts, and normal vitamin V12 and vitamin D levels. But the White House never fully explained its mysterious journey to Walter Reed in November 2019 when Mike Pence was directed to be on standby to assume the powers of the presidency. Since then, Trump's struggle to descend a ramp at West Point and his strange drinking of water with two hands have been the subject of widespread speculation about cognitive problems. He has denied having "a series of mini-strokes" in an angry tweet, but his doctor never fully addressed the visit or his cognitive state.
WHO WILL TREAT THE PRESIDENT?
His treatment is given by Dr. Sean Conley, who introduced other Walter Reed employees, including lung specialists, and was led by Dr. Brian Garibaldi, brought in by Johns Hopkins in Baltimore. However, the White House has not answered any questions about the names of its entire team. Nor was it said whether he or Dr. Conley consulted other doctors on the coronavirus task force, including Dr. Tony Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx, both renowned specialists. And it was not said whether he was Dr. Scott Atlas, the controversial task force member, who spoke out in favor of "herd immunity" and minimized the importance of masks and was called by "outliers" who give "bad information" to Dr. Fauci. It has also not been discussed whether Dr. Conley has contacted Admiral Ronny Jackson, Trump's last doctor at the White House. He quit after his Veterans Affairs nomination was withdrawn and an investigation was opened into whether he was drunk on the job and distributing prescription drugs to employees nicknamed "Candyman". He had previously claimed that the president could "live to 200". On Friday he tweeted that the president was "asymptomatic," which quickly became clearly untrue. He is running for Congress as a Republican and it is unclear whether he will retain medical registration.
When exactly was he diagnosed with COVID-19?
We still don't know. We now had three different versions of Trump's diagnosis from the White House, from Wednesday morning to Friday at 1 a.m. The White House also didn't say what "diagnosed" means – it could mean identifying clinical symptoms or testing positive.
The White House announced Donald Trump's – and the First Lady's – positive test result for the first time on Friday morning at 1 a.m. EST. But Dr. Sean Conley said just before noon on Saturday morning that the president was "72 hours after diagnosis". That would mean he was diagnosed with COVID on Wednesday and as early as Wednesday morning – after he returned from the presidential debate with Joe Biden and before attending a lawn event at the White House South, he flew to an indoor fundraiser and rally inside Free to Minnesota. Dr. Conley then offered another version, which said Thursday afternoon "we repeated tests" and Trump received a PCR test – the most accurate because it "gave some sort of clinical indication". He didn't say if that was before or after his flight to New Jersey for an indoor fundraiser. Trump himself told Sean Hannity just after 9 p.m. that night that he was waiting for a test. After Conley spoke, a White House source said, & # 39; in the background & # 39;: & # 39; the doctor said it was day 3, not 72 hours. The diagnosis was made on Thursday evening. & # 39; In another round, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany issued a written statement from Conley saying he had mistakenly used the term "seventy-two hours" instead of "day three" and "forty-eight hours" instead of "day." two "used. He added that the first diagnosis was made on Thursday evening.
WHEN EXACTLY WERE SYMPTOMS DETECTED AND WHEN WAS EXACTLY TESTED?
Again we don't know. There's no clarity as to when Trump was last tested before his positive result. Dr. Conley reiterated the White House's claim that he was tested "frequently" but did not say what that meant. You never said if he routinely got the less accurate 15-minute test from Abbott Labs or the advanced OCR test.
When he got to the presidential debate on Tuesday, Trump was too late to be tested by the Cleveland Clinic. Moderator Chris Wallace said there was an "honor system" for the candidates; Trump's team told the Debate Commission it was negative. That night he reportedly fell asleep home from the presidential debate in Air Force One, unlike normal television and tweeting. However, it is not known if this was viewed as a possible symptom at the time.
Dr. Conley initially said that Trump was diagnosed & # 39; 72 hours & # 39; before the Saturday statement, which would mean Wednesday morning.
Trump then went to Minnesota for a fundraiser and rally on Wednesday, where he spoke for 45 minutes, far less than his usual more than an hour appearances. It is not known if this was treated as a symptom. Hope Hicks' positive result came Thursday morning, but no one said if Trump was tested as soon as it was given or if he had a full nasal swab by late Thursday afternoon.
Did he go to any events when doctors suspected he was unwell or had been diagnosed with clinical symptoms of COVID?
White House doctors and a number of statements offer no insight into when Trump first felt uncomfortable. if someone suspected they were uncomfortable; when it was first tested; and if a doctor saw clinical signs of COVID before having a nasal wipe. That means Trump could have gone to any or all of the Minnesota fundraising drives and rallies. a White House South Lawn event; and a fundraiser in New Jersey with doctors who suspect he has had or even tested him for COVID.
Misleading medical reports, doctor tracing, and a confused timeline: How a paranoid Trump's fear of leaks has left his own team in the dark about the severity of his condition – and how exposed they are to COVID-19
The White House has been plunged into chaos and confusion following Trump's coronavirus diagnosis as staff are left in the dark about the president's condition and possible risks to their own health.
Over the past four days, Trump's team has come up with a series of conflicting reports of the president's illness that cast doubt on when he tested positive and how severe his symptoms were.
In the meantime, the virus has spread further in the White House, infecting at least 12 people who work there until Saturday night as staff try to stay informed through the media as there is no transparency through top brass in the Trump administration.
A senior White House official in an interview with Intelligencer on Saturday cracked the lid on the 1600 Penn State, stating that paranoid attempts to prevent leaks have not only failed, but are also endangering the health and safety of staff.
"Ninety percent of the complex (the White House) certainly learned about it from the news, as it has since then," said the senior official.
There are reports that COVID is spreading like wildfire in the White House. Since this whole thing started, not a single email has been sent telling staff what to do or what is going on. & # 39;
The official said the majority of staff had received little to no reliable information about the state of the president or anything else related to the outbreak.
"I think most of this is paranoia about leaks," they said, "but … the leaks continue."
The White House is in chaos and confusion following Donald Trump's coronavirus diagnosis as staff are left in the dark about the president's condition and possible risks to their own health. Pictured: Marine One leaves the White House Friday as Trump is rushed to Walter Reed National Military Hospital for treatment
Confusion erupted outside the White House on Saturday when Trump's medical team at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center offered a vague but sunny update on his health, which the President's Chief of Staff, Mark Meadows, contradicted.
& # 39; The President is doing very well this morning. The team and I are very pleased with the progress the President has made. He's been free of fever for 24 hours and we're cautiously optimistic, ”Trump's personal doctor Sean Conley told reporters outside of Walter Reed.
Conley's portrayal was far more hopeful than that of Meadows, who spoke to a press pooler in the background immediately after the briefing ended.
Trump's personal physician Sean Conley (pictured) announced a vague update on his condition outside of Walter Reed on Saturday morning, saying the president was "doing very well".
& # 39; The President's vital signs for the past 24 hours have been very worrying and the next 48 hours will be critical to his upkeep. We're still not on a clear path to a full recovery, ”Meadows said.
The briefing raised more questions than answers when Conley refused to say what temperature Trump was when he had a fever or whether he was getting oxygen.
Conley also said the president was "72 hours after the diagnosis," suggesting that Trump could have tested positive as early as Wednesday – not Thursday evening as the White House had claimed.
If he was 72 hours after his diagnosis, it would mean Trump was positive the day after the presidential debate with Joe Biden and positive during a rally in Minnesota on Wednesday and a fundraiser in New Jersey that 100 people attended Thursday.
Conley and other senior officials spent the rest of the Saturday backing out, claiming the doctor misspelled when he said "72 hours" and he actually meant "day three".
After Chief of Staff Mark Meadows (pictured) told a pool reporter, “The President's vital signs for the past 24 hours have been very worrying and the next 48 hours will be critical to his upkeep. We are still not on a clear path to a full recovery. & # 39;
Trump announced his diagnosis just before 1:00 a.m. Friday, hours after his top adviser, Hope Hicks, was found to have tested positive after feeling sick following his rally with the president on Wednesday Minnesota had traveled.
The White House tried to keep Hick's diagnosis a secret and apparently did not inform its own staff, though there was a possibility they might have been exposed to it.
Questions about the schedule concern both inside and outside the White House since the President had traHe was exposed to countless people in several days before his diagnosis was announced.
On Wednesday, the president appeared at a rally in Duluth, Minnesota, in front of a crowd of hundreds of people, particularly those who were not socially distant.
He spoke for 45 minutes, far less than his usual over an hour performances. At the rally he was seen throwing red MAGA hats into the crowd. Then he fell asleep on Air Force One as opposed to normal television and tweeting.
The next day, Trump traveled to his golf course and resort in Bedminster, New Jersey to hold a fundraiser with about 100 attendees.
Trump reportedly met about 19 high-dollar GOP donors privately and appeared "sluggish" during the fundraiser.
The contact tracing process is ongoing in New Jersey and Gov Phil Murphy is telling anyone at the Bedminster event or in the area to quarantine themselves and get tested.
The fundraiser organizers sent an email to attendees letting them know about Trump's diagnosis and asking them to get tested if symptoms occur.
It is unclear whether Trump intercepted the virus directly from Hicks, who traveled with him to his debate against Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in Cleveland on Tuesday and to Minnesota on Wednesday.
On Wednesday, the president spoke at a rally in Duluth, Minnesota, in front of a crowd of hundreds of people, particularly those who were not socially distant
It is unclear whether Trump intercepted the virus directly from Hicks, who traveled with him to his debate against Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in Cleveland on Tuesday and to Minnesota on Wednesday. Hicks with White House Advisor Jared Kushner and White House Social Media Director Dan Scavino walk to Air Force One Wednesday
On Friday evening, the President was flown to Walter Reed Hospital for a multi-day stay with Marine One for “caution” treatment after reporting symptoms of fever, cough, and congestion that the White House deemed “mild “Designated.
Rumors that officials downplayed the severity of Trump's condition swirled Friday night when an anonymous White House official claimed he was hospitalized for "breathing difficulties."
Dr. Conley said Saturday he spoke "48 hours after" Trump received his first dose of Regenron's experimental polyclonal antibody cocktail. That would mean Thursday morning.
And another doctor – Brian Garibaldi – said, “About 48 hours ago the president received specific antibody therapy against the coronavirus. We are working very closely with the company to monitor them for this result. He received his first dose of IV remdesvir last night. & # 39;
Then Conley said in a statement that Regenron was administered for the first time on Friday – but not when. That said, two doctors have now said the White House had spoken wrongly.
Conley repeatedly refused to answer questions about whether the President had ever been given supplemental oxygen, simply stating that he was absent at the time of the briefing.
The doctor said Trump's medical team was still examining the president to see when he could be released from Walter Reed, but claimed he was on the mend.
Both Conley and the White House claimed that Trump's hospital stay was more precautionary than a sign that his case was getting worse.
However, Intelligencer spoke to Panagis Galiastatos, a pulmonologist and intensive care doctor at Johns Hopkins who has treated more than 100 COVID-19 patients in his hospital's intensive care unit, and questioned that suggestion.
Galiastatos said the details about Trump's remdesivir treatment indicated that he was suffering from a "moderate" or "severe" case of COVID-19.
The doctor suspects Trump "likely had COVID-19 on Wednesday," and noted that patients had "days before" symptoms that are contagious.
If so, it could mean that Trump was positive during Tuesday night's debate with Biden. Both Biden and his wife Jill tested negative following news of Hicks' diagnosis.
Meadows disagreed with Conley's claim that Trump did "very well" in his comment on the press pool immediately after Walter Reed's briefing.
The chief of staff apparently had no intention of getting his message across to the wider press pool – but after that he appeared on Fox News on Saturday night, admitting that Trump's condition was "very worrying" on Friday.
Multiple sources also claimed Trump was oxygenated prior to his admission to Walter Reed, which the White House confirmed later on Sunday evening.
The president addressed the nation himself on a video from the hospital Saturday night, saying he was feeling better while, Meadows had said, acknowledging the next two days would be critical.
“I came here, I didn't feel that good, I feel a lot better now. We're working hard to get me back. I have to go all the way back because we still have to make America great, ”Trump said in the video posted on Twitter.
“I don't know the next few days, I think. That's the real test, so we'll see what happened over the next few days. & # 39;
The president is said to have been upset by the confusion about his condition after Meadows appeared to undermine Conley's optimistic report.
But just as frustrated are those who work in the White House who are only informed through the media because they fear they will be the next employee to be infected with the virus.
Speaking to the senior White House official, Intelligencer put the ordeal in a broader context and asked how, given the chaotic treatment of this internal outbreak, Americans could trust the Trump administration's nationwide portrayal of the coronavirus.
"I can't," replied the officer.
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