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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.

980d ago / 5:56 PM UTC

Trump calls for another stimulus package as he's being treated for Covid-19

President Donald Trump called for a coronavirus relief package Saturday as he was being treated for Covid-19 himself. 


Congressional negotiators have been deadlocked with the Trump administration for months over another relief package or stimulus. 

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin recently restarted their talks this week, but they are still hashing out their differences. 

980d ago / 5:35 PM UTC

Source: Trump's health contradicts doctors' optimism

A source familiar with President Donald Trump's health contradicted the optimistic outlook that the president's physicians offered Saturday morning.

"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," the source said in a statement provided to the White House press pool.

The pool is a small group of reporters who travel with the president on behalf of all the news outlets who cover the White House. The source's comments were not provided to NBC News directly.

980d ago / 5:30 PM UTC

Schumer: Senate GOP decision to move forward with Barrett's confirmation is 'dangerous'

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., criticized Senate Republicans on Saturday for moving forward with the confirmation process for Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett. 

Schumer's statement came after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., announced that the Senate would recess until Oct. 19 but still move forward with Barrett's confirmation hearings.

"The decision to recess the Senate for two weeks after at least three Republican Senators have tested positive for COVID-19 makes clear that the Senate cannot proceed with business as usual as the virus continues to run rampant," Schumer said. 

"If It’s too dangerous to have the Senate in session it is also too dangerous for committee hearings to continue," he said. "Leader McConnell and Chairman Graham’s monomaniacal drive to confirm Judge Barrett at all costs needlessly threatens the health and safety of Senators, staff, and all those who work in the Capitol complex."

980d ago / 5:24 PM UTC

'I am feeling well!': Trump gives update on Twitter

980d ago / 5:22 PM UTC

White House official says Conley misrepresented timeline of Trump's diagnosis

After Dr. Sean Conley created significant confusion on the timeline of President Donald Trump's diagnosis, telling reporters Trump was "72 hours into the diagnosis now," a White House official said Conley meant that Trump was on Day 3 of the illness.

The official said the diagnosis was made Thursday night, making Saturday the third day into his diagnosis.

The White House official also said Conley misspoke when he said Trump had been administered a Covid-19 treatment from Regeneron 48 hours ago. It was given to Trump later Thursday night, according to the official.

The timeline of Trump's diagnosis is important.

Trump notified the public that he had tested positive just before 1 a.m. Eastern on Friday. He held campaign events on Wednesday and Thursday.

980d ago / 4:44 PM UTC


980d ago / 4:40 PM UTC

The questions Trump's doctor evaded at the Walter Reed briefing

Dr. Sean Conley, President Donald Trump's White House physician, dodged several key questions Saturday as he briefed a small group of reporters outside Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where the president is being treated.

  • Has he been on any supplemental oxygen? Conley was pressed several times to answer this question. He repeatedly said Trump was not receiving oxygen Saturday morning and eventually said, "Thursday, no oxygen, none at this moment, and yesterday with the team, while we were all here, he was not on oxygen." Conley, however, would not say whether Trump previously received oxygen at the White House.
  • When was the president's last negative test? Conley said he's "not going to get into testing going back."
  • Has the president had any lung damage? "We're following all of that. We do daily ultrasounds. We do daily lab work. The team is tracking all of that," said Conley, who, when pressed again to answer the question, said he wouldn't get into their findings.
  • How was the president infected and when did it happen? Conley declined to answer these questions.
  • What was Trump's fever when he had it? Conley said the president has been fever-free over the last 24 hours. He said Trump had a fever Thursday into Friday but he would "rather not give any specific numbers" when asked for Trump's actual temperature when he had the fever.
980d ago / 4:28 PM UTC

McConnell announces the Senate will not return until Oct. 19, Barrett confirmation hearings to go on as planned

After news that three GOP senators tested positive for Covid-19, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced in a statement Saturday that the Senate will not come back into session until Oct. 19. 

"On Monday, I intend to obtain a consent agreement for the Senate to meet in pro forma sessions for the next two weeks. Previously-scheduled floor activity will be rescheduled until after October 19th," McConnell said. 

The Senate had originally been scheduled to return to Washington next week.

The confirmation hearing process for Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett will go on as planned, however, with the Senate Judiciary Committee convening on Oct. 12, McConnell said. 

"The Senate’s floor schedule will not interrupt the thorough, fair, and historically supported confirmation process previously laid out by Chairman Graham," he said.

McConnell, R-Ky., also said that "all Republican members of the committee will participate in these important hearings," which can be done virtually. 

Sens. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., and Mike Lee, R-Utah, two members of the panel, announced Friday that they tested positive for the coronavirus. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., who does not sit on the committee, announced Saturday that he, too, has tested positive for the disease.

980d ago / 4:21 PM UTC

Trump's physician raises questions over diagnosis timeline

Dr. Sean Conley raised some significant questions as to when President Donald Trump was diagnosed with the coronavirus.

"He's 72 hours into his diagnosis now," Conley said Saturday morning.

However, it has only been 36 hours since Trump notified the public that he had tested positive. According to Conley's timeline, Trump would have been diagnosed sometime Wednesday.

If Conley's timeline holds, it would mean Trump withheld his diagnosis from the public for more than 24 hours and that he attended a private fundraiser at his New Jersey resort Thursday afternoon and a campaign rally in Minnesota on Wednesday knowing he was ill.

980d ago / 4:05 PM UTC

Doctors say no estimated date for when Trump can leave hospital

"I don't want to put a hard date on that," President Donald Trump's physician, Dr. Sean Conley, said Saturday morning when asked by reporters when the president could be discharged from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Conley emphasized that Trump was doing "well" but, given the course of the illness, it was too soon to say if the president was out of the woods.

980d ago / 4:04 PM UTC

Attorney General William Barr tests negative this morning

Attorney General William Barr was tested for coronavirus again Saturday morning and, according to a Justice Department spokesperson, tested negative.

980d ago / 4:02 PM UTC

Chris Christie, who helped Trump prep for debate, tests positive for coronavirus

Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie tested positive for the coronavirus, he confirmed on Twitter on Saturday, after having spent days helping President Donald Trump prepare for Tuesday's debate. 

Christie is the latest in a series of current and former officials who were near Trump in the past week to test positive for the disease. He told ABC News on Friday that during debate preparation with Trump, no one wore masks, including himself and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who has said he tested negative on Friday.

Christie, who is overweight, was hospitalized in 2011 after having a severe asthma attack.


980d ago / 3:59 PM UTC

Trump has been 'fever-free' for over 24 hours, hasn't need supplemental oxygen at hospital

President Donald Trump has been fever-free for over 24 hours and has not needed supplemental oxygen since being hospitalized, his doctors told reporters outside Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. 

"It's important to note the president has been fever-free for over 24 hours. We remain cautiously optimistic. But he's doing great," said Dr. Sean Conley, the White House physician for the president. 

Conley said his medical team is "extremely happy with the progress the president has made."

"Thursday, he had a mild cough and some nasal congestion and fatigue, all of which are now resolving and improving," he said.

Dr. Sean Dooley told reporters, "We have monitored his cardiac function, his kidney function is, his liver function, all of those are normal. And the president this morning is not on oxygen, not having difficulty breathing or walking around the White House medical unit upstairs."

Asked if the president has needed oxygen, Conley said, "He's not on oxygen right now. That's right." 

Pressed again to answer the question, Conley only said, "He's not needed any this morning at all. That's right."

Conley did not say whether the president previously needed supplemental oxygen or if he had any lung damage.

980d ago / 3:09 PM UTC

Pence still planning to travel to Utah for vice presidential debate

Mike Pence is still planning to travel to Salt Lake City on Monday ahead of the vice presidential debate against Sen. Kamala Harris on Wednesday, two White House officials tell NBC News.

Pence is then set to hold a campaign event in Peoria, Arizona, on Thursday, the day after the debate.

President Donald Trump was originally scheduled to campaign in Arizona on Monday and Tuesday, before canceling due to his positive Covid-19 diagnosis.

980d ago / 2:32 PM UTC

Vice President Mike Pence and Karen Pence both test negative this morning

Both Vice President Mike Pence and his wife, Karen Pence, have been tested again this morning for the coronavirus and received negative test results, a White House official told NBC News.

980d ago / 2:18 PM UTC

McConnell refuses to say if he's been tested recently

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to say Friday whether he’s recently been tested for the coronavirus, despite a growing number of positive tests in the White House and among Republicans.

"Have I ever been tested? Yes," McConnell told reporters who asked repeatedly. "I'm not gonna answer questions about when. We are following the guidelines that we were given by the CDC."

McConnell spoke at the Georgetown Community Hospital in Georgetown, Kentucky, touring the facility he’d helped secure federal funding for through the CARES Act.

The Republican leader also said he had not met recently with the president, first lady or other people who have recently tested positive for the coronavirus.

980d ago / 2:11 PM UTC

How three GOP senators recovering from the coronavirus could potentially delay Barrett's confirmation

With three Republican senators testing positive for Covid-19, the confirmation vote for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett could be delayed this month.

Sens. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Thom Tillis, R-N.C., two members of the Senate Judiciary Committee tasked with considering the nomination, announced Friday that they tested positive for the disease. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., who is not a member of that panel, has also tested positive, his spokesman said Saturday morning. 

None of the senators have indicated the severity of their cases. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that individuals isolate for at least 10 days after testing positive.

Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., plans to hold hearings for Barrett’s confirmation during the week of Oct.12.

Graham tweeted Friday night, “Any Senator who wants to participate virtually will be allowed to do so.” He added that he had spoken to Lee by phone and said, “He's in good spirits and on the mend.”

Graham has also said he aims to hold the committee’s vote to advance Barrett’s nomination to the full Senate on Oct. 22. If both Lee and Tillis were unable to be present for the vote, either Republicans could postpone the vote or Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., could automatically advance the nomination to the floor.

In the full Senate, however, if Lee, Tillis and Johnson are unable to be present in Washington for the final confirmation vote, which requires a 51-vote majority, it could further delay the process.

The GOP has 53-47 majority in the Senate, so McConnell can only lose three votes. Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, and Susan Collins, R-Maine, have already said they oppose voting before Election Day. If two of the three sick senators were unable to vote, it could delay confirmation until after the Nov. 3 election.

980d ago / 2:04 PM UTC

Melania Trump's 'symptoms have not worsened'

From the first lady’s chief of staff, Stephanie Grisham: 

“Mrs. Trump is doing well. Her symptoms have not worsened and she continues to rest. She remains in touch with her husband. She is thinking of all who are ill and wishes them a speedy recovery.”

980d ago / 1:58 PM UTC

President's doctor to provide update from hospital

980d ago / 1:15 PM UTC

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.

980d ago / 12:45 PM UTC

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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.

980d ago / 12:30 PM UTC

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.

Image: China's President Xi Jinping and President Donald Trump attend a welcome ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.
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


980d ago / 12:21 PM UTC

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."

980d ago / 11:34 AM UTC

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.

980d ago / 10:55 AM UTC

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."

980d ago / 10:03 AM UTC

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. 

980d ago / 8:46 AM UTC

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.

Image: North Korean leader Kim Jong Un speaks during a meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea in Pyongyang
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un sent well wishes to President Trump on Saturday, after Trump contracted the coronavirus. KCNA / AFP - Getty Images
980d ago / 4:30 AM UTC

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.

980d ago / 4:22 AM UTC

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."

980d ago / 4:11 AM UTC

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."


980d ago / 3:42 AM UTC

Trump tweets from hospital