Pres. Trump COVID-19 update raises doubt about time of diagnosis, condition


US President Donald Trump walks to Marine One prior to departure from the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC, October 2, 2020, as he heads to Walter Reed Military Medical Center, after testing positive for Covid-19. – President Donald Trump will spend the coming days in a military hospital just outside Washington to undergo treatment for the coronavirus, but will continue to work, the White House said Friday (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Immediately following the Saturday morning update on Pres. Donald Trump’s condition after being hospitalized for COVID-19, the timeline and details of Trump’s diagnosis are being called into question.

During the conference, physician Dr. Sean Conley indicated that Trump was “72 hours into the diagnosis,” which would put the positive test earlier than early Friday morning, when the news was announced, according to the New York Times.

The announcement, according to the NYT, was made around 1 a.m. ET on Friday, which would only be 36 hours ago. Being 72 hours into the diagnosis would mean the President had COVID-19 as early as Wednesday.

Doubt was also sparked by seeming vagueness of new information. While Dr. Conley and others on the medical team indicated they were pleased with Trump’s condition, some specifics were not given.

During the conference, Dr. Conley would not detail certain aspects, including the height of Trump’s fever, questions about steroids — in addition to seeming hesitance to discuss oxygen with reporters.

Several minutes after the questions erupted over social media, Wall Street Journal White House Reporter Rebecca Ballhaus said a WH official clarified, saying Dr. Conley meant to say the diagnosis was in Day 3, not 72 hours in. Meanwhile, a source reportedly told the White House pool that 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.”

This was echoed by the Associated Press, who reported on Saturday that a source familiar with Trump’s condition says he was administered supplemental oxygen at the White House before being flown to Walter Reed.

Concern has also arisen around the safety of Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden, who debated only feet away from Trump on Tuesday. According to the Biden campaign, they were not contacted regarding possible exposure.

New York Magazine WH Reporter Olivia Nuzzi tweeted about the confusion and concerns shortly after, saying: “The press and the public are struggling with this fundamental problem: we do not know who we can trust to receive reliable information about the health of the President of the United States.”

On Saturday afternoon, Conley released a memo called “Timeline Clarification,” where he says he “incorrectly used to term ‘seventy two hours’ instead of ‘day three’ and forty eight hours’ instead of ‘day two.’

“The President was first diagnosed with COVID-19 on the evening of Thursday, October 1st and had received Regeron’s antibody cocktail on Friday, October 2nd,” the memo reads.

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