Donald Trump tells supporters he has ‘tested totally negative’ for COVID-19 one day after giving White House address to hundreds of supporters
- Donald Trump said he has ‘tested totally negative’ for coronavirus
- His doctors are yet to confirm that he is no longer infected with COVID-19
- They say he’ll return to work without risk to others but not that no virus remains
- Trump made the claim during a phone call with supporters on Sunday
- Earlier a tweet claiming he was ‘immune’ was flagged by Twitter as misleading
- Trump also boasted of being ‘immune’ in a Sunday morning Fox News interview
- Even those who have had COVID are not certain to be immune to reinfection
In a ‘Call to Prayer’ telephone conversation on Sunday, the president told his supporters that he was back on top form and excited to be returning to the campaign trail.
‘I’ve been tested totally negative,’ he said, in the audio message posted on YouTube.
‘I’m going to be out in Florida tomorrow, working very hard because this is an election we have to win.’
Trump’s physician, Dr Sean Conley, is yet to confirm a negative test.
Donald Trump held a ‘Call to Prayer’ on Sunday, speaking to supporters and updating them
Dr Sean Conley, Trump’s physician, is yet to say that the president has tested negative
Some medical experts have been skeptical that Trump could be declared free of the risk of transmitting the virus so early in the course of his illness.
Just 10 days since an initial diagnosis of infection, there was no way to know for certain that someone was no longer contagious.
Dr Marc Lipsitch, an infectious disease expert at the Harvard School of Public Health, told AP the doctor’s letter does not provide enough information to be assured that Trump is no longer infectious to others.
He noted that Trump’s use of steroids could prolong viral shedding so the CDC’s 10-day standard may or may not apply.
‘It is a judgment call,’ he said.
Dr Albert Ko, an infectious disease specialist and department chairman at the Yale School of Public Health, said the White House appeared to be following CDC guidelines for when it is appropriate to end isolation after mild to moderate cases of COVID-19 – but Trump’s hospitalization and steroid treatment indicated it was severe.
Ko cautioned that those who have had severe cases of the diseases should isolate for 20 days. He noted that Trump was treated with the steroid dexamethasone, which is normally reserved for patients with severe COVID.
Trump, 77, tested positive on October 1 and was in the Walter Reed hospital from October 2-4.
He has repeatedly expressed how ‘amazing’ he feels, which cynics put down to the steroids he was given, but has not provided a negative test, despite being asked repeatedly.
Conley sent out a memo on Saturday saying the president was no longer at risk of transmitting the coronavirus.
He did not, however, say explicitly whether Trump had tested negative for it.
A person can be symptom-free and not be a risk of transmitting the virus to others, and yet can still have the coronavirus in their system.
One of Trump’s tweets on Sunday was flagged by Twitter as ‘misleading’ after he claimed he was immune to the coronavirus.
The social media site claimed that Trump violated its company’s rules about spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to the virus and pandemic.
‘A total and complete sign off from White House Doctors yesterday. That means I can’t get it (immune), and can’t give it. Very nice to know!!!’ Trump said in a tweet, which has now been flagged by Twitter with a disclaimer.
The disclaimer attached to the post reads: ‘This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules about spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible.’
Twitter flagged Trump’s tweet as ‘misleading’ after he claimed he is now ‘immune’ from coronavirus
Trump claimed he could no longer get coronavirus or transmit it to others, which Twitter said is ‘potentially harmful information related to COVID-19’
It also prompts users to ‘learn more’ in a link that directs to a page on ‘helping people find reliable information’ about COVID-19.
Trump made the claim in a tweet after repeatedly telling Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo during a Sunday morning interview that he was ‘cured’ and now ‘immune’ from coronavirus just over a week after his initial diagnosis.
‘Once you recover, you’re immune,’ the president said during the 30-minute phone interview on Sunday Morning Futures.
‘Now you have a president that’s immune.’