Even as Donald Trump returned to the White House and proclaimed he may now be “immune” to Covid-19 after several days in hospital, Dr Anthony Fauci cautioned that patients with the virus should be prepared for the possibility of a “reversal” in their condition.
Dr Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the US’s response to the pandemic, gave a “heads up” to those taking care of the president, telling CNN it is “still early” in Mr Trump’s recovery.
“It’s no secret that if you look at the clinical course of people, sometimes when you are five to eight days in, you can have a reversal," he told the news channel.
"It’s unlikely that it will happen. But they need to be heads up for it. He knows it, the physicians know it. And so they are going keep an eye out on it, and they will try and do it within the confines of the White House as opposed to in a hospital,” Dr Fauci said.
His comments came shortly after the US president returned to the White House from the Walter Reed Medical Center, and released two videos on his Twitter account.
The first clip showed his return with the helicopter landing at the White House and him making his way to the balcony, where he is seen promptly removing his mask.
Dr Fauci, whose messaging has at times conflicted with Mr Trump’s own even as they work together on the administration’s coronavirus task force, said: “You are not out of it until you have gone several days out and [are] doing well.
“But he [Trump] certainly does look very well. You saw the way he came out of the helicopter. He looked like he was in pretty good shape.”
In his second video on Monday night, Trump told the Americans that he feels great and people should not be afraid of the virus.
“Don’t let it dominate. Don’t let it take over your lives. Don’t let that happen. We are going back to work. I know there is a risk, there is a danger, but that’s OK. And now I am better, maybe I am better. I don’t know. But don’t let it dominate your lives. Get out there, be careful,” Mr Trump said in the video.
The US outbreak has seen more than 7.4 million cases and more than 210,000 people have lost their lives.