White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said the administration was “optimistic”. President Trump will be able to return to the White House on Monday after spending several days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center receiving treatment for coronavirus. Trump’s health improved overnight The president is ready to “return to a normal work schedule”.
“I spoke to the president this morning,” Meadows said in a statement to Fox News. “He has continued to improve overnight and is ready to go back to a normal work schedule.” He added that the president “will meet with his doctors and nurses this morning to make further assessments of his progress.”
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Meadows concluded, “We are still optimistic that he can return to the White House later today, and his medics will make that decision later today.”
His comments came while the President was trying to convey a picture of strength while staying at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in the fight against COVID-19. The president has had health problems fighting the novel coronavirus for the past few days, including two cases where his blood oxygen levels suddenly dropped. Doctors treated the president with a dose of the steroid dexamethasone in response.
A normal blood oxygen value is between 95 and 100. Dr. Sean Conley, the White House doctor who has served as the president’s personal physician, said Trump had another episode on Friday and during “high fever” and blood oxygen levels below 94% “on Saturday.
Even so, members of the president’s medical team said they were encouraged by his energy and test results and signaled that he may be ready to be released from Walter Reed on Monday.
The president made a brief trip outside the hospital on Sunday to greet supporters who had gathered outside but was criticized for the short visit of the motorcade. Some said he was jeopardizing the health of US intelligence officials for a quick photo op.
In response, White House Assistant Secretary Judd Deere said in a statement that “reasonable precautions were taken in the conduct of this movement to protect the President and all who support it, including the PSA”.
He added, “The move has been approved as safe by the medical team.”
The president has so far received doses of remdesivir, an antiviral drug that has been approved by the FDA to treat the coronavirus.
“If you look at the therapeutics I’m taking right now, some of them and others coming out soon are honestly miracles,” Trump said in a video he posted on Twitter Saturday night.
“I don’t know the next few days, I think – that’s the real test, so we’ll see what happened in the next few days,” he added.
While White House staff await the president’s return, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Sunday that the White House will not release the names or the exact number of staff who have contracted the novel coronavirus – a look back at an earlier one Comment from another speaker.
On privacy concerns, McEnany said the White House will not release the number of employees who have COVID-19, despite prior assurances from Alyssa Farah – the White House’s director of strategic communications that the numbers might come out.
“There are privacy concerns,” said McEnany. “We take it seriously to protect the information of the staff here at the White House.”
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McEnany also refused to comment on whether President Trump – who announced in the early hours of Friday that he and First Lady Melania Trump had contracted the virus – before the presidential debate in Cleveland, Ohio, or before a fundraiser at his place had received a coronavirus test on golf course in Bedminster, New Jersey last Thursday.
“I’m not going to give you a detailed, timestamped display every time it’s tested,” she said. “He is tested regularly and the first positive test he received was when he returned from Bedminster.”
Trump’s senior counselor Hope Hicks tested positive for the virus on Thursday morning.
The results came not long before the president was due to take off at Marine One for the fundraiser at his golf club.
Hicks’ diagnosis confirmed that Trump was in close proximity to someone infected with the virus. Then you should quarantine according to public health guidelines. But Trump continued the journey. Not only that, but others who were also around Hicks weren’t immediately notified of their positive test.
Andrew O’Reilly of Fox News and The Associated Press contributed to this report.