Trump returns to Oval Office after doctor says he's been free of coronavirus symptoms

Key Points
  • President Trump has been "symptom-free" for more than 24 hours as he continues to be treated for the coronavirus at the White House, one of his doctors said in a new memo.
  • Trump has also been "fever-free for more than 4 days" and has not required supplemental oxygen since leaving Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the doctor said.
  • Dr. Sean Conley's brief memo did not include any specific updates on the president's drug regimen.
U.S. President Donald Trump gestures on the Truman Balcony after returning to the White House from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Oct. 5, 2020.
Win McNamee | Getty Images

President Donald Trump was briefed in the Oval Office on Wednesday after one of the doctors treating him for the coronavirus said the president has been "symptom-free" for more than 24 hours.

Trump, who had returned to the White House from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center just two days earlier, was briefed in the Oval Office on stimulus talks and Hurricane Delta, a press aide told reporters.

President Trump back in the Oval Office, briefed on stimulus and Hurricane Delta

NBC News, citing a senior administration official, reported that chief of staff Mark Meadows and social media aide Dan Scavino were present in the room with the president during the briefing.

Earlier Wednesday, White House physician Dr. Sean Conley said in a memo that Trump had been "symptom-free" for more than 24 hours and "fever-free for more than 4 days."

The president has not required supplemental oxygen since leaving the hospital on Monday, Conley said.

"Of note today, the President's labs demonstrated detectable levels of SARS-CoV-2-IgG antibodies from labs drawn Monday," the White House physician added.

Later in the afternoon, Trump's account posted a nearly five-minute video of the president speaking from outside the Oval Office about his health and his administration's response to the pandemic.

He said he had "pushed" the Food and Drug Administration to make virus-related approvals, and suggested that a vaccine would not come before the election due to "politics."

"I think we should have it before the election, but frankly the politics gets involved, and that's OK, they want to play their games, it's going to be right after the election," Trump said. 

Conley's brief memo did not include any specific updates on the president's drug regimen. Trump, since testing positive for the coronavirus last week, has taken numerous treatments, including the steroid dexamethasone, the antiviral therapy remdesivir and an antibody cocktail from Regeneron.

The memo did include remarks from Trump himself. "The President this morning says 'I feel great!'" Conley wrote.

After the briefing, Trump tweeted that he "was just briefed on Hurricane Delta, and spoke with [Gov. Greg Abbot]  of Texas and [Louisiana Gov.] John Bel Edwards."

Trump was hospitalized Friday evening, hours after he announced on Twitter that he and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for Covid-19.

He was discharged three days later and flown back to the White House on Marine One. The president, who is possibly still contagious, raised eyebrows and drew criticism when he took off his mask upon returning to the White House on Monday night. 

Larry Kudlow, Trump's top economic advisor, refused to tell CNBC if Trump has been wearing a mask as he returns to work. Kudlow, who appeared on CNBC "Squawk Box" on Wednesday morning, also said Trump had been in the Oval Office a day earlier — but other White House officials quickly contradicted him.

The White House confirmed later Wednesday, however, that Trump was being briefed in the Oval Office.

In the wake of Trump's diagnosis, a growing number of people who work at the White House have also tested positive for Covid-19. The list includes top domestic aide Stephen Miller and press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and some of her deputies, as well as multiple members of the press corps.

Some Republican lawmakers who recently attended an event on the White House South Lawn — which defied some of the recommended social-distancing guidelines issued by health experts in the Trump administration — have also tested positive.

After returning from the hospital, Trump revived his active Twitter presence. On Tuesday, the president tweeted that he had ordered his aides to cease negotiations with Democrats on a deal for additional coronavirus stimulus money until after the Nov. 3 election. The move baffled Wall Street investors and political pundits alike. He later prodded Capitol Hill to approve additional coronavirus relief in separate bills. On Wednesday, he tweeted or retweeted more than a dozen times as of early afternoon.