US president Donald Trump left hospital on Monday night despite receiving ongoing treatment for coronavirus, after saying he felt better than he did 20 years ago.
“Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life,” he tweeted.
“We have developed, under the Trump Administration, some really great drugs & knowledge. I feel better than I did 20 years ago!”
Mr Trump’s comments about Covid-19 – which has killed almost 210,000 Americans – come as his medical team said he was “not entirely out of the woods yet”.
In a press conference outside the Walter Reed Medical Center shortly before Mr Trump’s anticipated departure, the president’s doctor Sean Conley said that Mr Trump’s progress supported the safe return of the president to the White House, noting he “will be surrounded by world class medical care – 24/7”.
He added: “We send patients home with medications all the time.”
But he warned that a full picture about Mr Trump’s condition would not be known for another week.
“We all remain cautiously optimistic and on guard, because we’re in a bit of unchartered territory when it comes to a patient who received the therapies he has so early in the course. . . If we can get through to Monday with him remaining the same or improving better yet, then we will all take that deep sigh of relief.”
He also declined to give information on Mr Trump’s lung scans, or clarify when the president last tested negative.
Mr Trump was returning to the White House as the web of infected employees and officials based there continued to grow.
White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and two of her colleagues were the latest officials to contract the virus.
Ms McEnany announced that she had tested positive on Monday morning, prompting questions as to why she continued to mingle with members of the press and other aides despite knowingly having been in close contact with aide Hope Hicks, who tested positive last week.
Meanwhile, vice president Mike Pence departed Washington on Monday for a multi-state trip, despite attending the September 26th Supreme Court nomination event that has been linked to an outbreak of cases.
Speaking to reporters as he left for Salt Lake City ahead of Wednesday’s vice-presidential debate, he said: “When the president told me he was headed back to the White House, he told me to head to Utah. ”