The ‘handshake’ scare across the US following a patient’s interactions with Donald Trump on 8 March notwithstanding, the president is in excellent health, the White House said two days after the Conservative Political Action Conference. However, Trump has not been tested for coronavirus, the White House said.
The president was in contact with several lawmakers who have since then gone into self-imposed quarantine due to their proximity to the patient at the CPAC where Trump was campaigning.
A test was not necessary because President Trump is not showing symptoms and it is not confirmed that the lawmakers are infected, White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham said on Monday. “The president has not received COVID-19 testing because he has neither had prolonged close contact with any known confirmed COVID-19 patients nor does he have any symptoms,” Grisham said. “President Trump remains in excellent health, and his physician will continue to closely monitor him,” the White House spokesperson said.
The virus has an incubation period of approximately 14 days. Earlier during a news conference, Trump had assured the country that his administration was taking all necessary steps to bring it under control. “We are going to take care of, and have been taking care of, the American public and the American economy,” he said.
Vice President Mike Pence, who is leading the US’s fight against coronavirus, said the risk of contracting the virus to the American people remained low. He said the risk of serious disease among the people of his country remained low too. “The President did deploy not just a whole-of-government approach, but also a whole-of-America approach. And last week, at the President’s direction, we met with leaders in industries, from nursing homes to airlines, pharmaceutical companies, commercial labs, and it has had a great, great impact,” he said.
“Pharmaceutical companies are already working, literally around the clock, on the development of therapeutics; that will be medicines that can bring relief to people that contract the coronavirus. I know how pleased the President was to learn that the commercial labs in this country, led by companies like LabCorp and Quest, have already brought a test forward and are taking that to market effective today,” Pence said.
This week, the US government plans to have meetings with hospital CEOs, health insurance CEOs and, to further the president’s announcements slated for 11 March with regard to economic relief for working Americans.
The death toll internationally from the novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) crossed 3,800 on Tuesday, as China reported 17 new deaths. The virus has spread to over 100 countries with more than 110,000 cases of infection.