diagnosis

Appearing at White House, Trump holds first public event since COVID-19 diagnosis

By Andrea Shalal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump made his first public appearance since returning to the White House on Monday from a three-day stay in hospital for COVID-19, even as his aides remained silent on whether he is still contagious.

Standing alone and not wearing a mask, Trump spoke from the White House balcony at an event called “a peaceful protest for law & order,” attended by a few hundred people standing on the lawn below. His appearance is seen as a first step toward resuming full campaigning next week.

Speaking without hesitation, Trump appeared to be back to his usual rallying form, boasting about his record and hurling unsubstantiated allegations against his opponents as a packed crowd of supporters chanted, “We love you.”

It was the first public event Trump has held since he was released from the hospital on Monday, when some observers watching his return to the White House said he appeared at times to be short of breath.

The White House has released videos and Trump has called into television shows since then, but this was the public’s first chance to see the president live.

The White House has not released the results of Trump’s latest COVID-19 test, and has declined to say when he last tested negative. A White House spokeswoman said on Friday that Trump would be tested for COVID-19 and would not go out in public if it was determined he could still spread the virus.

Scott Atlas, the doctor advising Trump, declined to comment on Trump’s last test when approached by Reuters outside the event cordon. He was not wearing a mask.

Trump, who has campaigned on a law-and-order theme during recent months of sometimes violent protests for racial justice, told Saturday’s gathering that the Republican Party had the

Trump planning to host 1st in-person event since diagnosis at White House on Saturday: Sources

ABC News Corona Virus Government. Response

His doctor said the president can hold “public engagements” starting Saturday.

The event will feature “remarks to peaceful protesters for law and order” by the president, according to an invite obtained by ABC News and confirmed by two White House sources familiar with the planning.

The gathering is scheduled to take place on the South Lawn of the White House in conjunction with a previously planned event organized by controversial conservative activist Candace Owens’ group Blexit, a campaign to urge Black Americans to leave the Democratic Party, sources said.

Trump according to a source is expected to address the crowd from the balcony of the White House.

With just days separating the president from his stay at Walter Reed Medical Center, experts fear this type of event threatens to exacerbate the crisis already engulfing the White House and further spread the disease. On Wednesday, ABC News reported that the coronavirus outbreak had infected “34 White House staffers and other contacts” in recent days, citing an internal government memo.

“All attendees must bring a mask with them and will be instructed to wear it on the White House Complex,” a source familiar with the planning of the event told ABC News. “All attendees must submit to a Covid-19 screening tomorrow morning. This will consist of a temperature check and a brief questionnaire. The health and safety of all attendees is our priority and following CDC guidelines is strongly encouraged.”

PHOTO: This invitation to a White House event scheduled for October 10 was obtained by ABC News.

This invitation to a

Trump to hold first White House event after coronavirus diagnosis

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden campaign raises over M on day of VP debate Trump chastises Whitmer for calling him ‘complicit’ in extremism associated with kidnapping scheme Trump says he hopes to hold rally Saturday despite recent COVID-19 diagnosis MORE plans to hold an in-person event at the White House on Saturday, an official confirmed to The Hill, his first public engagement since being diagnosed with the coronavirus last week.

ABC News, which first reported the plans, said that Trump would speak to an audience on the South Lawn from the balcony of the White House at an event being billed to invitees as “remarks to peaceful protesters for law and order.” 

The event is being coordinated with one organized by conservative activist Candace Owens. It is not clear how many individuals will attend the outdoor event. The setup suggests that Trump will not be close to any of his guests.

White House physician Sean Conley said in a memo Thursday that Trump would be able to make a “safe return” to public events by Saturday, which marks 10 days since Trump’s diagnosis, and that he has responded “extremely well” to his treatment for COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that patients self-isolate for at least 10 days after the onset of symptoms from the coronavirus. Trump was diagnosed with the virus last Thursday night and was treated with the antiviral medication remdesivir, the steroid dexamethasone and an experimental antibody cocktail.

Some health experts have expressed skepticism with plans to allow Trump to return to public engagements so soon, noting that those with severe symptoms are told to isolate for longer, up to 20 days, and that there remains a risk that his symptoms could return or worsen.

“Given the lack of transparency on his health

White House, a coronavirus hot spot, is cold on contact tracing despite Donald Trump’s Covid-19 diagnosis



a man holding a sign: Wearing protective suits, masks and gloves, demonstrators call attention to the outbreak of coronavirus in the White House. Photo: AP


© AP
Wearing protective suits, masks and gloves, demonstrators call attention to the outbreak of coronavirus in the White House. Photo: AP

The Trump administration’s resistance to contact tracing since the president tested positive for Covid-19 reflects a calculation that there’s little political upside in highlighting this close to the election the number of people at the pinnacle of US power potentially exposed to the virus by him, say health experts and political analysts.

Masks and contact tracing – used effectively in China, Taiwan, South Korea, Singapore and elsewhere – are proven tools in breaking the chain of infection in lieu of a vaccine, medical experts say. But their success can depend on many other factors.

Public health experts have traditionally focused on the profile of the virus and therapies to combat it.

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“But it turns out the most important thing in fighting it seems to be effective political leadership, and in the US we don’t have that,” said Ronald Waldman, a global health professor at George Washington University and former investigator at the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “If your primary priority is getting elected, that’s great for the virus.”

Analysts say President Donald Trump and aides appears to have concluded that robust tracing of hundreds, even thousands, placed at risk by his inner circle would only spotlight the virulence of a disease he has repeatedly downplayed, claimed would disappear or decried as a hoax.

It also could highlight his controversial policies and behaviour, and the particular vulnerability of top Republicans central to his legacy and re-election effort, they add, hardly a good look for a president losing support in the polls.

“From the White House point of

White House prepares for Trump to return to Oval Office after coronavirus diagnosis

Washington — In the wake of President Trump’s discharge from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center early this week, the White House is making preparations for the president to return to work in the Oval Office as early as Wednesday, just days after he was diagnosed with COVID-19.

White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told reporters Wednesday that Mr. Trump had wanted to be in the Oval Office on Tuesday, and safety preparations are underway in the event he moves from the residence to the West Wing.

“He continues to work,” Meadows said. “We’ve got a number of safety protocols with full PPE, masks, goggles and the like for any direct interaction with the president in those areas.”

Meadow added that ventilation is also being addressed for when the president returns to the West Wing. The president is expected to return to the Oval Office as soon as Wednesday, senior administration officials said, and so-called “isolation carts” with personal protective equipment are being set up with gowns, masks, and goggles. Staff are expected to wear them if they are going to come within six feet of the president.

Officials also said the president recorded a video inside the White House on Tuesday that has yet to be released, but could come out later in the day.

The White House had been exploring the use of the Diplomatic Reception Room and Map Room for Mr. Trump to work and make television appearances, a senior administration official told CBS News on Tuesday. Both rooms are on the ground floor of the residence and close to the White House Medical Unit.

Mr. Trump and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for COVID-19 late Thursday after one of the president’s closest aides, Hope Hicks, contracted the virus last week. Since then, more than