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Trump's doctor walks back '72 hours' Covid diagnosis timeline

Here are the latest updates on President Donald Trump's coronavirus diagnosis.

President Donald Trump's physicians provided more confusion than clarity during a press conference Saturday morning after the president was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Friday night.

The doctors offered different timelines on when Trump was diagnosed with Covid-19 and when he began treatment. They also painted an optimistic picture of the president's health, which was almost immediately contradicted by a White House source who described the president's vitals over the past 24 hours as "very concerning."

Trump's coronavirus diagnosis has thrown his campaign into confusion with four weeks before the Nov. 3 election. A number of people connected to Trump or White House events have also tested positive for the coronavirus. Among them were former aide Kellyanne Conway, three Republican senators, and campaign manager Bill Stepien.

This live coverage has ended. Continue reading news from Sunday on the president's condition.

Another GOP senator, Ron Johnson, tests positive for the coronavirus

Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., has tested positive for Covid-19, according to his communications director, Ben Voelkel.

In a statement, Voelkel said Johnson was exposed to someone who tested positive for the disease on Sept. 14 and the senator stayed in quarantine for two weeks "without developing symptoms and tested negative twice during that time."

"He returned to Washington on Sept. 29 and shortly after was exposed to an individual who has since tested positive. After learning of this exposure, the senator was tested yesterday afternoon. This test came back positive. Senator Johnson feels healthy and is not experiencing symptoms. He will remain isolated until given the all-clear by his doctor," the statement said.

Sens. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Thom Tillis, R-N.C., have also tested positive for Covid-19.

See the full list of Covid-19 test results disclosed by members of President Donald Trump's inner circle.

A negative test result does not necessarily mean that person is coronavirus-free, as the virus may take several days to show up on a test.

China's Xi Jinping wishes Trump a speedy recovery

China's leader, Xi Jinping, wished President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump a speedy recovery in a message Saturday.

Xi said after learning Trump and Melania had tested positive for Covid-19, he and his wife, Peng Liyuan, extended sympathy to them and wished them a speedy recovery, according to state-owned Xinhua News Agency. 

The two leaders have had a turbulent relationship. Trump previously called Xi a "friend" but has since clashed with China on issues of trade, the coronavirus, Hong Kong's autonomy and human rights abuses toward its Uighur Muslim minority.

Xi's message strikes a more diplomatic tone than state-owned Chinese media, which had a whiff of schadenfreude Friday as it accused Trump of paying a personal price for playing down the pandemic.

World leaders including North Korea's Kim Jong Un and Russia's Vladimir Putin also extended their well wishes to Trump.

China's President Xi Jinping and President Donald Trump attend a welcome ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.Fred Dufour / AFP via Getty Images file

 

Trump diagnosis is a reminder about Covid-19's 'ongoing threat,' former CDC head says

President Donald Trump's diagnosis "is a reminder that COVID-19 is an ongoing threat to our country and can happen to anyone," a former head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned. 

"This event demonstrates that we need a comprehensive approach to COVID-19," Dr. Tom Frieden, now the president and CEO of Resolve to Save Lives, said in a statement. "Testing does not replace safety measures including consistent mask use, physical distancing, and hand washing."

He added that "learning more about when President Donald Trump and others with whom he had contact last tested negative and first tested positive will help understand this outbreak and limit the risk of further spread."

Eric Trump, Lara Trump both test negative for the coronavirus

Eric Trump and his wife, Lara Trump, have both tested negative for Covid-19, according to a spokesperson for the couple.

"Eric and Lara are praying for their father and father-in-law, respectively. At this time, they both have negative COVID tests and will be taking all necessary precautions, under the advisement of medical professionals," the spokesperson said in a statement posted to Lara Trump's Twitter account.

Lara Trump works for the president's re-election campaign.

The couple were among members of the president's family who attended the presidential debate in Cleveland on Tuesday and removed their masks.

Experimental drug given to Trump 'very promising,' professor involved in U.K. trials says

The experimental coronavirus drug being given to President Donald Trump is "very promising" and "very potent," an Oxford University professor involved in British trials of the treatment said Saturday.

Professor Peter Horby said patients in the U.K. began receiving REGN-COV2, made by Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, last weekend as part of Oxford University's national Recovery trial.

"The class of drugs, these artificial antibodies, have been around for quite a while now, and they've been extensively used in inflammatory conditions and cancers, and they're pretty safe and well understood, and so the technology is something that I think we have confidence in,” he told the BBC.

"This particular drug has probably been given to, I would think now, four or five hundred patients, mild or severe patients in different trials, and so far there's been no worrying safety signals."

Trump's Covid-19 diagnosis provides a wake-up call

For many Americans, the coronavirus pandemic started on the night of March 11.

News of a trio of events spread quickly across the United States: The actors Tom Hanks and his wife, Rita Wilson, announced they had caught the virus, President Donald Trump addressed the nation and announced a ban on foreign nationals entering the U.S. from many European countries and the NBA indefinitely suspended its season.

Coronavirus concerns had penetrated the national consciousness before then, but the succession of events became a turning point in how the nation regarded the virus.

Almost seven months later, the news that Trump and first lady Melania Trump had contracted the virus has created a similar turning point at a time when coronavirus fatigue had caused concern among experts that the U.S. was no longer taking the pandemic seriously as a continuing health crisis.

It comes, however, in an environment in which the pandemic has been heavily politicized for months, leaving no guarantee that the president's situation will resonate as that night in March did.

Click here to read the full story. 

North Korea's Kim Jong Un offers 'sympathy' to Trump, state media reports

North Korea's secretive leader Kim Jong Un offered his "sympathy" to President Donald Trump and his wife, Melania, after learning they had tested positive for Covid-19, state media reported late Friday.

"He hoped they will surely overcome it, he sent warm greetings to them," the official Korean Central News Agency reported.

The two men made history as Trump became the first sitting U.S. president to meet with a leader of North Korea in June 2018 and later took an unprecedented step onto North Korean soil in 2019. But their relationship has cooled somewhat since then.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un sent well wishes to President Trump on Saturday, after Trump contracted the coronavirus. KCNA / AFP - Getty Images

Number of Covid cases grows among people at White House ceremony

The number of people from President Donald Trump's inner circle who have tested positive for the coronavirus is growing, with at least seven confirmed cases tied to an event in the Rose Garden last weekend.

On Saturday, Trump officially announced Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to replace the late Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the next U.S. Supreme Court justice at an outdoor ceremony attended by more than 150 people, many who did not wear masks or practice social distancing.

In addition to the president and first lady, at least five others who were at the ceremony have been confirmed to have Covid-19: former top Trump aide Kellyanne ConwayRepublican Sens. Thom Tillis from North Carolina and Mike Lee from Utah, Notre Dame President the Rev. John Jenkins and a White House journalist.

Click here for the full story.

Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien tests positive

President Donald Trump's campaign manager, Bill Stepien, has tested positive for the coronavirus, making him the latest in a spate of close contacts who have contracted Covid-19

In an email to his staff obtained by NBC News, Stepien announced his diagnosis and said he feels "fine" and plans to return to the office as soon as possible. 

"Just as he always has, President Trump trusts that we will work as hard as we can to share his record of success to the American people," Stepien wrote in the email. "I will still be doing that, and I know you will too during the homestretch."

He signed off on the email with, "31 days to victory."

Trump said to be 'doing very well,' started remdesivir therapy

President Donald Trump, who has Covid-19 and was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Friday, is "doing very well" and does not require any supplemental oxygen, his physician said Friday night.

"This evening I am happy to report that the President is doing very well," White House physician Dr. Sean Conley said in a statement. "He is not requiring any supplemental oxygen, but in consultation with specialists we have elected to initiate Remdesivir therapy."

Remdesivir is an experimental antiviral therapy. Trump has completed his first dose and was resting comfortably, Conley said in the statement, which was tweeted by White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany.

Trump also tweeted Friday night: "Going welI, I think! Thank you to all. LOVE!!!"

Earlier Friday, the White House said Trump received an experimental drug, "a single 8 gram dose of Regeneron's polyclonal antibody cocktail," and that the president "completed the infusion without incident."