US President Donald Trump releases a video message assuring all he's doing well just days after testing positive for Covid-19.
US President Donald Trump was back at work in the Oval Office just six days after testing Covid-19 positive, despite warnings that his return could put others at risk.
After contradictory statements on whether the president was back at work on Tuesday, a senior administration official told AFP that Trump was present on Wednesday with an "extremely limited" number of staff in his office.
Trump released a video message saying he's feeling "great" and "like perfect" and called his diagnosis "a blessing in disguise."
Trump received an experimental antibody cocktail made by Regeneron through a “compassionate use” exemption. The safety and effectiveness of the drug have not yet been proven.
A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT! pic.twitter.com/uhLIcknAjT— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 7, 2020
Trump, who was hospitalised on Friday with the virus that has killed over 210,000 in the US, arrived by an outside door to avoid passing through the crowded corridors of his residence, the official said.
"Was just briefed on Hurricane Delta," the president tweeted, eager to project his return as a personal triumph over the disease as he trails badly in polls against Democratic challenger Joe Biden.
Trump's illness, like his dismissive stance on the virus, has fueled multiple controversies, including his made-for-television exit from the hospital on Monday.
Just after stepping off a helicopter at the White House, he climbed the stairs of his residence and pulled off his face mask - a tool against the virus that he has frequently downplayed.
"Don't let [Covid-19] dominate you. Don't be afraid of it," he urged Americans in his homecoming speech, despite the US having the largest total number of coronavirus infections and deaths in the world.
'Wacko for years'
By Wednesday, doctors reported the president had been free of Covid-19 symptoms for 24 hours and has not had a fever in four days.
"The president this morning says 'I feel great,'" doctor Sean Conley said in a brief update.
In an apparent attempt to provide greater clarity over how the disease has progressed, the update also detailed that Covid antibodies were found in Trump's blood tests on Monday.
Florian Krammer, professor at the Icahn School of Medicine in New York, told AFP those results don't mean much at this stage.
"It could well be that the majority of what is detected came from the transfusion," he said referring to the experimental antibody treatment Trump got Friday.
Trump has vowed to return to campaigning shortly and to participate in the second presidential debate against Biden in Miami on October 15.
As Trump seeks to revive his re-election campaign in the face of weak polling data just four weeks away from the November 3 election, he labelled Biden "a wacko."
The latest polls forecast a clear victory for Biden, with CNN giving the Democrat a national advantage of 57 percent to 41 percent among likely voters, and women voters going 66 to 32 percent in his favour.
"He's been a wacko for years, and everyone knows it," Trump tweeted. "Notice how all of the bad things, like his very low IQ, are no longer reported? Fake News!"
Biden traded blows with Trump in last week's chaotic debate, but the former vice president has also appealed to a broad-based yearning for calm.