0

Trump Said To Be Improving But Next 48 Hours 'Critical'

President Donald Trump gives a thumbs-up as he leaves the White House to go to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after he tested positive for COVID-19, Friday, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

President Donald Trump gives a thumbs-up as he leaves the White House to go to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center after he tested positive for COVID-19, Friday, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

photo

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows gives a thumbs up following a medical briefing with reporters at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., Saturday. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

By JONATHAN LEMIRE, JILL COLVIN and ZEKE MILLER

Associated Press

BETHESDA, Md. (AP) — President Donald Trump went through a "very concerning" period Friday and faces a "critical" next two days in his fight against COVID-19 at a military hospital, his chief of staff said Saturday — in contrast to a rosier assessment moments earlier by Trump doctors, who took pains not to reveal the president had received supplemental oxygen at the White House before his hospital admission.

"We're still not on a clear path yet to a full recovery," White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said outside the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

The changing, and at times contradictory accounts, created a credibility crisis for the White House at a crucial moment, with the president's health and the nation's leadership on the line. With Trump expected to remain hospitalized several more days and the presidential election looming, his condition is being anxiously watched by Americans.

Moreover, the president's health represents a national security issue of paramount importance not only to the functions of the U.S. government but to countries around the world, friendly and otherwise.

photo

Dr. Sean Conley, physician to President Donald Trump, briefs reporters at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., Saturday. Trump was admitted to the hospital after contracting the coronavirus. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Saturday's briefing by Navy Commander Dr. Sean Conley and other doctors raised more questions than it answered. Conley repeatedly refused to say whether the president ever needed supplemental oxygen, despite repeated questioning, and declined to share key details including how high a fever Trump had been running before it came back down to a normal range. Conley also revealed that Trump had begun exhibiting "clinical indications" of COVID-19 on Thursday afternoon, earlier than previously known.

Conley spent much of the briefing dodging reporters' questions, as he was pressed for details.

"Thursday no oxygen. None at this moment. And yesterday with the team, while we were all here, he was not on oxygen," Conley said.

But according to a person familiar with Trump's condition, Trump was administered oxygen at the White House on Friday morning, well before he was transported to the military hospital by helicopter that evening. The person was not authorized to speak publicly and spoke to The Associated Press only on condition of anonymity,

Conley said that Trump's symptoms, including a mild cough, nasal congestion and fatigue "are now resolving and improving," and said the president had been fever-free for 24 hours. But Trump also is taking aspirin, which lowers body temperature and could mask or mitigate that symptom.

"He's in exceptionally good spirits," said another doctor, Sean Dooley, who said Trump's heart, kidney, and liver functions were normal and that he was not having trouble breathing or walking around.

Trump is 74 years old and clinically obese, putting him at higher risk of serious complications from a virus that has infected more than 7 million people nationwide and killed more than 200,000 people in the U.S.

Meadows himself had insisted Friday morning that Trump had only "mild symptoms" as the White House tried to project an image of normalcy. It was unclear whether Trump already had received oxygen when Meadows spoke.

"President Trump remains in good spirits, has mild symptoms and has been working throughout the day," press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said late in the day on Friday. She said Trump had only been sent to Walter Reed as a precaution.

Trump's administration has been less than transparent with the public throughout the pandemic, both about the president's health and the virus' spread inside the White House. The first word that a close aide to Trump had been infected came from the media, not the White House. And aides have repeatedly declined to share basic health information, including a full accounting of the president's symptoms, what tests he's undertaken and the results.

In a memo released late Friday, Conley did report that Trump had been treated at the hospital with remdesivir, an antiviral medication, after sharing that he'd taking another experimental drug at the White House.

Conley declined to say when Trump had last been tested before he was confirmed to have COVID-19 late Thursday. He initially suggested that Trump was 72 hours into the diagnosis — which would mean that he was confirmed infected Wednesday. Conley later clarified that Trump was administered an accurate test for the virus on Thursday afternoon, after White House aide Hope Hicks was confirmed to be positive and Trump exhibited "clinical indications" of the virus.

The White House has said Trump was expected to stay at the hospital for "a few days" and would continue to work from its presidential suite, which is equipped to allow him to keep up his official duties. In addition to accessibility to tests and equipment, the decision to move to the hospital on Friday was made, at least in part, with the understanding that hurrying there later could send a worrying signal if he took a turn for the worse.

On Saturday, Conley said Trump's blood oxygen level was 96%, which is in the normal range. The two experimental drugs he has received, given through an IV, have shown some promise against COVID-19. On Friday, he was given a single dose of a drug Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. is testing to supply antibodies to help his immune system fight the virus.

Friday night, he began a five-day course of remdesivir, a Gilead Sciences drug currently used for moderately and severely ill patients. The drugs work in different ways — the antibodies help the immune system rid the body of virus and remdesivir curbs the virus' ability to multiply.

"We're maximizing all aspects of his care," attacking the virus in multiple ways, Conley said. "I didn't want to hold anything back if there was any possibility it would add value to his care."

He noted that in many cases, COVID-19 can become more dangerous as the body responds. "The first week of COVID, and in particular day seven to 10, are the most critical in determining the likely course of this illness," he said.

At the same time, the White House has been working to trace a flurry of new infections of close Trump aides and allies. Attention is focused in particular on last Saturday's White House event introducing Trump's Supreme Court nominee. That day, Trump gathered more than 150 people in the Rose Garden, where they mingled, hugged and shook hands — overwhelmingly without masks. There were also several indoor receptions, where Trump's Supreme Court pick, Judge Amy Coney Barrett, her family, senators and others spent time in the close quarters of the White House, photographs show.

Among those who attended and have now tested positive: former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, the president of the University of Notre Dame, and at least two Republican lawmakers — Utah Sen. Mike Lee and North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis. The president's campaign manager, Bill Stepien, and the head of the Republican National Committee, Ronna McDaniel, have also tested positive, though they were not at the event.

Despite its failure to protect the president and senior staff from infection, the White House has given no indication that it intends to make any major protocol changes, such as mandating that everyone wears a mask.

Meadows, the chief of staff, accompanied the president to the hospital aboard Marine One, the kind of small, enclosed space where experts say the virus easily spreads. Those aboard did wear masks.

While Vice President Mike Pence is currently off the campaign trail preparing for the coming week's vice presidential debate, he and his staff are operating under a "business as usual" approach. He's still planning to travel to Arizona on Thursday, Indiana on Friday and Florida on Saturday for events instead of isolating himself after potential exposure and to protect himself from contracting the virus anywhere else.

__

Colvin and Miller reported from Washington. Associated Press chief medical writer Marilynn Marchione contributed to this report from Milwaukee.

Comments

ISpeakFacts 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

1

ISpeakFacts 2 months ago

Comment deleted, just like I said! The Tribune continues to pander to China and delete any criticisms towards their masters!

0

John 2 months ago

Many would like to see Trump recovered and finish the battle for another four years in the White House. Yes it will be a strange and unusual peace if he loses but hopefully it is after a speedy recovery and return to health.

1

Proguing 2 months ago

We hope that he makes a quick recovery, so that he can be ready for his second term.

3

C2B 2 months ago

He is very popular among the poorly educated. Does this shoe fit you?

1

GodSpeed 2 months ago

And who is Biden popular with? Nobody.

2

joeblow 2 months ago

@C2B... but he is very popular with those who have common sense!

2

TalRussell 2 months ago

Nice man Comrade Jimmy's 1976 presidential campaign was not that of Trump's response during the 2016 presidential campaign to Comrade Sister Hilary's near-fainting spell tells us about the true makeup such a bully, and what he alongside his puppet elected republicans can be expecting in return nearing the close 2020 presidential campaign. Shakehead once for Yeah there is nothing nice about this man not to resuming the 2020 presidential election in full battle gear,** Twice for Not?

0

OMG 2 months ago

How can any normal intelligent person even to begin wishing another term for this disgusting lying deluded idiot. What is it that needs to happen before those supporters see reality. The man lies on tape then denies it, dodged the draft 5 times and makes disgusting comments about pow's and dead servicmen, Makes fun of Bidens sons when his sons have never served in the military, makes fun of disabled (yes its on video) and grabs women by the pus_ey. And thats just the tip of the iceberg. How the hell can anybody defend this despicable leader o f a great country.

0

GodSpeed 2 months ago

You should probably not watch so much CNN, MSNBC etc, then once the brainwashing wears off you can begin to understand why Trump is actually the only thing stopping America from turning into a Socialist dump.

0

John 2 months ago

Trump is also suffering from fatigue. And that will be a factor in his doctors decision to release him tomorrow or keep him ‘resting’ fir a few more days. Despite his intentions, since being elected, Trump has been like the energizer bunny day and night fulfilling the duties of his office and keeping abreast with social media and newscast.. the man is not super human and needs rest. He is in good shape fior his age, but come on!

1

TalRussell 2 months ago

Had man has done this in the colony, Mr. Minnis's judges would've jailed him!
Not yet hospital discharged and what the man demonstrates that it's much too damn hard teach an old pot cake new tricks by his risking the lives secret service protection detail agents squashed together into an enclosed SUV with all windows rolled up to take him on surprise drive-by his known be armed with live rounds guns gathered outside hospital not wearing face coverings, right-wing supporters. The man he self was only wearing a home-sewn face covering.
Shakehead once for Yeah your comrade not making this fleabag of a man's up, Twice for Not

0

nassaugirl 2 months ago

Yes I agree Trump all the way to the federal prison.

0

GodSpeed 2 months ago

If Obama and Hillary aren't in jail why should Trump be?

0

John 2 months ago

Trump is definitely sick! He left his hospital today to drive past a group of supporters. The idiot had a highly contagious disease and by law should be in quarantine for 14 days. Shameful and totally irresponsible

1

joeblow 2 months ago

... while IN a vehicle with windows UP and wearing a mask! How does that pose a risk? Surely the TEAM of doctors who are managing his problem would have had some input, especially since they were prepared to discharge him within 24 hrs!!

0

bahamianson 2 months ago

The Bahamian CNN followers are so manipulated by them. You can tell a follower, listen to them speak. The first words that come out of their mouths are Bigot, xenophobic, racist etc. They repeat what CNN says.

1

themessenger 2 months ago

I'm not a fan of any American news station as most of them offer more opinion than news. But CNN is no worse than Fox News which is eerily similar to what ZNS became under the Pindling regime, a political mouthpiece, apologist, and deflector of the truth.

0

Sign in to comment