Trump said no COVID-19 negative test, continues to obfuscate on health

  • President Donald Trump on Thursday dodged questions from Fox News about whether he has yet tested negative for COVID-19.
  • The obfuscation came despite Trump claiming he is now recovered from the illness, after testing positive last week.
  • He said he would “probably” be tested on Friday arguing that “there’s no reason to test all the time.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump implied that he has yet to test negative for COVID-19 since his diagnosis, despite boasting that he has recovered.

Speaking with Fox News anchor Sean Hannity on Thursday night, Trump dodged questions over whether he had been tested since he announced his positive test the week before, leading to a three-night stay in the hospital.

Hannity asked if Trump had tested positive since last week. Trump responded that he would likely be tested on Friday, and claimed that there’s no reason to be regularly tested.

He said “Well what we’re doing is probably the test will be tomorrow. The actual test, because there’s no reason to test all the time.”

trump walter reed

A car with US President Trump drives past supporters in a motorcade outside of Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland on October 4, 2020.

ALEX EDELMAN/AFP via Getty Images

He also avoided earlier questions on testing from Hannity:

When Hannity asked if he had been tested recently, Trump responded: “Yeah, I just saw the doctors today. They got me in great shape. I’m in great shape”

And when Hannity asked if he had tested negative, Trump did not answer and instead pointed to an experimental cocktail of antibodies he had been given. “I’ll tell you I took this Regeneron and it’s phenomenal,” he said.

White House Physician Sean Conley said in a memo on Thursday that he thinks Saturday is when Trump can make a “safe return to public engagements.”

Trump told Hannity that he hopes to do a rally in Florida on Saturday night, and one in Pennsylvania on Sunday.

Saturday will be 10 days after Trump was first diagnosed.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that COVID-19 patients wait 10 days after their symptoms first appear before being around others (as long as they have not had a fever in the preceding 24 hours.)

The White House has not disclosed details about Trump’s symptoms or when any first emerged.

Officials have instead obfuscated details of the president’s health.

The White House won’t say when Trump last tested negative before his positive diagnosis.

That means it is unclear who is at risk among the people that Trump saw in the busy week before he tested positive, or when Trump is likely to stop being infectious.

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Trump on his way to Walter Reed Military Medical Center after he tested positive for COVID-19 on October 2, 2020.

SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

As Business Insider’s Jake Lahut and Oma Seddiq reported, the last time Trump or anyone at the White House said on the record that the president tested negative was in May.

And, while Trump has bragged about returning to perfect health, he has shown evidence of ongoing symptoms.

He appeared to struggle to breathe in video footage showing him returning from the White House on Monday, and he had a cough during his interview with Hannity on Thursday.

Trump’s treatment plan also baffled experts, who told Business Insider that Trump was given treatments usually reserved for seriously ill patients. That, the experts said, could mean either that he was being over-treated or that he was more sick than his team had admitted.

Trump also returned to the White House even as experts warned that the worst of the virus may not yet be over.

The return panicked many White House staff given that he was likely still infectious.

According to a leaked FEMA report, 34 people in Trumo’s orbit have test positive as of earlier this week.

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