Don’t let COVID dominate your life, Trump Says as he Return Back to Office
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U.S. President Donald Trump returned to the White House Monday evening after 72 hours of hospitalization for COVID-19.
In a show of fitness, he climbed the steps of the South Portico, standing on the Truman Balcony where he removed his mask, gave a double thumbs-up gesture and saluted the Marine One helicopter as it prepared to take off from the South Lawn. Without putting his facemask back on, the president then walked into the White House where others were awaiting his arrival.
Earlier, as he walked out of the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Trump said, “Thank you very much, everybody.”
Stepping off the helicopter and walking toward the White House residence, the president paused to turn to the cameras, waved and gave a thumbs-up. Asked by VOA how he was feeling, a muffled reply of “real good” could be heard.
Trump’s reelection campaign said the Republican president, trailing former Vice President Joe Biden in the polls, plans to participate in the Oct. 15 second debate against the Democratic Party nominee.
“Though he may not entirely be out of the woods yet, the team and I agree that all our evaluations, and most importantly, his clinical status, support his return home” to the White House, which has medical facilities and practitioners to monitor the president around the clock, his primary physician, Dr. Sean Conley, told reporters Monday afternoon.
“Every day a patient stays in the hospital unnecessarily is a risk to themselves,” he added. “Right now, there’s nothing being done upstairs here that we can’t safely conduct down-home.”
Before leaving the hospital, the president tweeted, “Don’t be afraid of COVID. Don’t let it dominate your life,” adding that he felt better than he did 20 years ago.
Speaking with reporters at the hospital, Conley, an osteopath and a commander in the U.S. Navy, declined to answer some questions, such as the condition of the president’s lungs, citing patient confidentiality.
The president is taking a steroid, dexamethasone, which is typically not administered in mild or moderate cases of the coronavirus, along with a five-day course of remdesivir, an antiviral medication.
Trump’s physicians remain “cautiously optimistic and on guard, because we’re in a bit of unchartered territory when it comes to a patient that received the therapies he has so early in the course,” Conley said. “If we can get through to Monday with him remaining the same, or improving, better yet, then we will all take that final deep sigh of relief.”
After tweeting a video on Sunday that he was “getting great reports” from his doctors, Trump promised a little surprise for his supporters outside the hospital where he is being treated.
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