Trump returns to White House overshadowed by COVID-19 infections

US President Donald Trump, who doctors said isn’t “out of the woods,” left hospital on Monday evening for the White House that has been overshadowed by COVID-19 infections.

Three days after being admitted into Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland following a positive test result, Trump, dressed in a dark suit and wearing a mask, walked out of one of the hospital’s buildings while giving thumbs up to the press for a Marine One trip to the presidential residence.

The departure came only hours after White House physician Sean Conley told reporters that Trump “has continued to improve” and “met or exceeded all standard hospital discharge criteria” in another rosy assessment of the president’s condition. The doctor, however, also acknowledged that Trump “may not be entirely out of the woods yet”.

At age 74 and clinically obese, the patient is at a higher risk of serious complications from COVID-19 that has infected 7.45 million people and killed more than 210,000 in the United States.

Trump appeared eager to leave Walter Reed, a top US medical facility, reportedly arguing to people close to him that being hospitalised “makes him look weak”. To project strength and show him doing well, the president took a motorcade ride to greet his supporters outside the hospital on Sunday. Besides, he posted video clips of speeches on Twitter, while the White House shared pictures of him working during treatment.

Upon returning to the White House, Trump walked up the steps to the Truman Balcony, which overlooks the South Lawn, where he removed his mask and offered a salute to Marine One in front of cameras before moving inside.

“We’re going back. We’re going back to work. We’re gonna be out front. As your leader, I had to do that. I knew there’s danger to it but I had to do it,” Trump said in a new video. “I learned so much about coronavirus (COVID-19). And one thing that’s for certain. Don’t let it dominate you. Don’t be afraid of it. We’re gonna beat it.” -Xinhua

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