Washington, Oct 3 (efe-epa).- “I feel much better now,” US President Donald Trump said in a video posted Saturday that was apparently shot inside the military hospital where he was taken after being diagnosed with Covid-19.
The president is seen sitting at a desk, wearing a suit but no tie.
“I came here, wasn’t feeling so well. I feel much better now, we’re working hard to get me all the way back – I have to be back because we still have to make America great again,” Trump said in the clip.
The president was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in suburban Washington as night fell on Friday, roughly 17 hours after he disclosed via Twitter that he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for coronavirus.
“I look forward to finishing up the campaign the way it was started,” he said in the video posted Saturday, referring to his bid to win a second four-year term in the Nov. 3 election.
“We’re gonna beat this coronavirus or whatever you wanna call it,” Trump said, speaking of the efforts around the world to bring the pandemic under control.
Regarding his individual prognosis, he said: “Over the next few days we’re probably gonna know for sure.”
The video appeared on a day that saw the president’s doctor say that he was doing “very well” just before a source subsequently identified as White House chief of staff Mark Meadows used the phrase “very concerning” in regard to the 74-year-old head of state’s vital signs.
“At this time, the team and I are extremely happy with the progress the president has made,” physician and US Navy Cmdr. Sean Conley said at a press conference shortly before mid-day outside Walter Reed.
“The president has been fever-free for over 24 hours,” Conley said. “He is not requiring any supplemental oxygen, but in consultation with specialists we have elected to initiate remdesivir therapy.”
Created more than a decade ago by drug-maker Gilead Sciences, remdesivir has been shown in a clinical trial to shorten recovery time for some people with Covid-19, which is blamed for more than 208,000 deaths in the United States.
Conley said Friday in his first public statement about the president’s condition that Trump received a dose of a polyclonal antibody cocktail developed by Regeneron Pharmaceuticals that is currently classified as an experimental treatment for Covid-19.
The president had a blood oxygen level of 96 percent – within the normal range – on Saturday, Conley said, though he was not forthcoming on whether Trump had been given extra oxygen at any point since he began showing symptoms.
He also declined to disclose how high a temperature Trump had when he was experiencing a fever.
“I’d rather not give any specific numbers but he, but he did have a fever, Thursday into Friday, and since Friday morning, he’s had none,” Conley said.
One of Conley’s colleagues on the medical team, Dr. Sean Dooley, described the president as being “in exceptionally good spirits” and added that Trump told him “I feel like I could walk out of here today.”
And the president tweeted Saturday afternoon to express his appreciation for the staff at Walter Reed.
“Doctors, Nurses and ALL at the GREAT Walter Reed Medical Center, and others from likewise incredible institutions who have joined them, are AMAZING!!!Tremendous progress has been made over the last 6 months in fighting this PLAGUE. With their help, I am feeling well!,” Trump wrote.
But after the upbeat presentation from the medical team, an official offered the reporters who had attended the news conference a more somber appraisal.
“The president’s vitals over the last 24 hours were very concerning and the next 48 hours will be critical in terms of his care. We’re still not on a clear path to a full recovery,” said the statement later revealed to have come from Meadows.