US President Donald Trump returned to the White House on Monday night after spending four days at a military hospital where he was treated for coronavirus.
Trump, 74, looked healthy. Showing his fitness, Trump in an unusual decision climbed up the South Portico stairs, instead of the elevators, to go to his residence. He waved at reporters.
The president, after taking off his mask, stood up in the portico facing South Lawns for a few minutes and saluted Marine One.
In a mass email to his supporters after his arrival at the White House, Trump asked them not to be afraid of COVID-19.
“I’m telling you: Don’t be afraid of COVID. Don’t let it dominate your life! This is the greatest country in the world and under the Trump administration, we have developed some really great drugs and knowledge. WE WILL BEAT THIS, TOGETHER!” he said.
“The love and support from Americans from all over the world has been incredible and is something I’ll never forget. When I saw many great patriots outside of the hospital supporting me, I knew I had to drive by and thank them!” Trump added.
Earlier, he was discharged from the Walter Reed National Medical Centre after doctors treating him found that he was fit enough to go back home.
“Will be back on the Campaign Trail soon!!! The Fake News only shows the Fake Polls,” Trump said in a tweet moments before leaving Walter Reed National Medical Centre in Bethesda, a Maryland suburb of Washington DC.
His former White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said the president was strong and upbeat.
“He’s a fighter and will not quit battling this virus or surrender to the liberal mob and forces out to destroy our country,” Sanders said in a tweet.
Before boarding Marine One at Walter Reed, Trump told reporters that he was feeling good.
White House physician Dr Sean Conley told reporters at the Walter Reed National Military Centre that Trump had exceeded all standard hospital discharge criteria and had received another dose of Remdesivir drug in his treatment of COVID-19.
“Over the past 24 hours, the president has continued to improve. He’s met or exceeded all standard hospital discharge criteria. He has received another dose of Remdesivir, and we plan to get him home,” he said.
“It’s been more than 72 hours since his last fever. Oxygen levels, including ambulatory saturations and his work of breathing are all normal 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 the president’s safe return home, where he’ll be surrounded by world-class medical care 24 seven,” Dr Conley said.
Dr Sean Dooley, a pulmonary critical care physician, told reporters that the president continued to do very well.
His vital signs this morning, temperature was 98.1, his blood pressure 134 and 78 and respiratory rate 17 per minute. His heart rate was 68 beats per minute and his last Oxo haemoglobin saturation was 97 per cent on room air, he said.
He currently does not endorse any respiratory complaints, the physician said.
According to Dr Brian Garibaldi, director of Johns Hopkins Bio-containment Unit, on Sunday evening, the president received his third dose of Remdesivir and he tolerated that infusion without difficulty.
His kidney and liver function continued to be normal, he said.
“Our plan is to give the fourth dose of Remdesivir this evening, before he goes back to the White House, and we’ve made arrangements to deliver the fifth and final dose of his treatment course at the White House tomorrow evening,” Garibaldi added.
“He continues on Dexamethazone. The plan for today is to continue to be up and out of bed, eat, and drink and work as he is able,” he said.