Trump, White House give conflicting accounts of his condition

Trump’s address came just hours after differing assessments of his health from administration officials

  • US President Donald Trump says in a recorded message that he was feeling ill when he arrived at the Walter Reed medical centre but now feels better.
  • US president was moved to the military hospital in Bethesda, Maryland, for treatment after testing positive for COVID-19.
  • Earlier, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said president’s symptoms were “very concerning”.
  • Trump diagnosis forced him to withdraw at least temporarily from the campaign,  raising questions about its potential effects on the November 3 election.

Here are the latest updates:

02:15 AM ET (06:15 GMT) – Pompeo shortens upcoming Asia trip amid Trump hospitalisation

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will depart for Japan on Sunday but will not go to Mongolia and South Korea as originally planned, the State Department said, after President Donald Trump was hospitalised due to the coronavirus.

“Secretary Pompeo expects to be traveling to Asia again in October and will work to reschedule visits on that trip, that is now just a few weeks off,” the Department said in a statement.

Initially, Pompeo planned to visit all three countries between October 4 to October 8.

11:00 PM ET (03:00 GMT) – Trump personal assistant reportedly infected

One of President Donald Trump’s personal assistants has reportedly contracted the coronavirus.

Nick Luna reportedly worked closely with the president, according to Bloomberg reporter, Jennifer Jacobs.

10:10 PM ET (02:10 GMT) – Medical team ‘cautiously optimistic’ but Trump not ‘out of the woods’ yet

President Donald Trump’s main doctor says in a health update that the medical team treating the president is “cautiously optimistic,” but also notes that the president is “not yet out of the woods.”

The latest assessment came on Saturday night from Navy Commander Dr Sean Conley. He reported that Trump had been up and around at his medical suite during the day and had been conducting business.

Medical experts say the disease caused by the virus, COVID-19, can become more dangerous as the body responds to the infection over time.

08:45 PM ET (00:45 GMT) – Biden vows to release all COVID tests

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden’s campaign has vowed to release all future COVID-19 tests the candidate takes. Before Trump’s diagnosis earlier this week, Biden had not disclosed full details of his testing protocol or the results of each test.

He told reporters on Saturday in Wilmington that he had not been tested that day but would be tested on Sunday morning. His campaign said he tested negative for COVID twice on Friday.

Biden spokesman Andrew Bates said Biden was not in “close contact” with Trump, his family members or his aides during their debate on Tuesday night. Several people in Trump’s campaign have tested positive in recent days.

07:20 PM ET (23:20 GMT Saturday) – Trump releases video message

US President Donald Trump, who is being treated for COVID-19 in a military hospital outside Washington, said in a video on Saturday that he was feeling ill when he arrived at the facility but now was “starting to feel good”. The address came hours after conflicting assessments of his health from administration officials left it unclear how ill the president had become since he tested positive for coronavirus.

A White House team of doctors said on Saturday morning that Trump’s condition was improving and that he was already talking about returning to the White House.

But within minutes, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows gave reporters a less rosy assessment, telling reporters, “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.”

To read the previous updates from Saturday, click here.

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