Trump may be released Mon.; new voter survey shows Biden’s lead growing

Washington, Oct 4 (efe-epa).- President Donald Trump could be released from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Monday if his Covid-19 symptoms continue to improve and he remains mobile, with an adequate blood oxygenation level and no fever, Dr. Brian Garibaldi, one of the members of the military hospital’s medical team, said Sunday.

Garibaldi said at a Sunday press conference at the hospital that if Trump maintains his activity level, mobility and continues to have no respiratory problems, he could be released on Monday.

“Our plan for today is to have him eat and drink, be up out of bed as much as possible, to be mobile,” Garibaldi said.

“And, if he continues to look and feel as well as he does today, our hope is that we can plan a discharge as early as tomorrow to the White House where he can continue his treatment course,” the doctor added.

Trump’s personal physician, Sean Conley, said: “Since we spoke last, the president has continued to improve. As with any illness, there are frequent ups and downs over the course,” adding that Trump was flown to Walter Reed on Friday after a “rapid progression” of his illness, during which his oxygen levels fell worryingly low and as a result of which he received supplemental oxygen at the White House.

Doctors explained that, besides continuing with the anti-viral treatment using the drug Remdesivir, Trump has begun receiving dexamethasone to prevent new episodes of falling oxygenation in his blood, although Conley said that at no time had the president’s blood oxygen level fallen below 90 percent.

Dexamethasone is a corticosteroid that is used to prevent or treat the “cytokine storm” of immune response that is one of the body’s most dangerous responses to Covid-19, especially in older patients, and Trump is 74 and overweight.

The president on Sunday will receive a third dose of Remdesivir in accord with a five-day treatment plan and last Friday he was given an antibody cocktail prepared by the pharmaceutical firm Regeneron.

Pulmonary specialist Dr. Sean Dooley said that the medical team is monitoring Trump’s cardiac, liver and kidney function and their findings so far have been “normal.”

Conley discussed Trump’s medical progress since he was found to have become infected with the coronavirus last Thursday evening, after he created confusion on Saturday by suggesting that the president had been diagnosed with Covid-19 on Wednesday, a mistake that the White House soon corrected.

On Thursday night and early Friday morning, the president was feeling well and having only slight symptoms, but about midday on Friday his blood oxygen level fell under 94 percent and he had a high fever, whereupon doctors recommended that he take supplemental oxygen, Conley said.

The president has shown no difficulty breathing since Saturday and has not had a fever, and so doctors reiterated their optimism about the progression of his case.

Conley also added that lung scans performed on Trump had seen only the expected findings and showed nothing that caused concern.

Meanwhile, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden broadened his lead over Trump among voters after the two men faced off in an acrimonious debate last week.

Biden, who served as vice president from 2009-2017 under President Barack Obama, now enjoys a 14-point lead over Trump, according to a voter survey published Sunday and performed after the Sept. 29 debate, but before the president tested positive for Covid-19 According to the poll conducted by NBC News and the Wall Street Journal, 53 percent of voters back Biden in the Nov. 3 vote, while 39 percent said they will support Trump.

Biden’s lead has grown from 8 points a month ago to 14 points now, with a greater percentage of those surveyed saying that they think the Democrat performed better than Trump in last Tuesday’s debate in Cleveland.

The survey also found that 49 percent of voters feel that Biden performed better in the debate, compared to 24 percent who thought Trump won the face-off, while 17 percent said that they didn’t think either man won.

The debate was contentious and both men interrupted the other frequently, although Trump did so much more often than the former VP, mocking Biden and insulting him for always wearing a facemask, while the Democrat called the president a “clown.”

However, 73 percent of those surveyed said that the debate did not change their minds on who they will vote for, while 19 percent said that they were more likely than before to vote for Biden and 9 percent said they were more likely to favor Trump after the debate.

The survey, with an error margin of about 3.5 percent, was conducted before it became known that Trump had become infected with the coronavirus, a situation that could affect his election chances in less than a month.

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