Good evening. I’m Soumya Karlamangla, and it’s Monday, Oct. 5. Here’s what’s happening with the coronavirus in California and beyond.
After a chaotic weekend of conflicting information about President Trump’s battle with COVID-19, the First Patient headed home from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on Monday evening.
His departure came just three days after he was hospitalized for COVID-19. During that time, he received supplemental oxygen, remdesevir and dexamethasone, medicines typically reserved for the sickest of patients. That Trump was given these treatments so soon after his positive test result was announced raised questions about when the president actually fell sick, when he was first diagnosed, and how serious his symptoms were. Those questions remain unanswered.
Trump and some of his staff maintain that his symptoms are mild. On Sunday, he staged a motorcade drive-by to wave at his supporters lined up outside Walter Reed. On Monday, the president tweeted a message that downplayed the severity of the disease.
“Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life,” he wrote on Twitter. “I feel better than I did 20 years ago!”
Meanwhile, the number of Trump associates testing positive continues to grow. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and aide Nick Luna tested positive for the virus, as did Riverside Pastor Greg Laurie, who attended the Sept. 26 Rose Garden event where Trump announced his nomination of Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court.
Even more could fall sick in the week ahead, as it typically takes between five and seven days to test positive after exposure. Trump traveled to multiple states in the week before the announcement of his diagnosis. Now health officials in New Jersey are trying to contact 200 people who may have been exposed to the virus at a Trump campaign event.
As for Trump’s prognosis, experts say he remains contagious and should isolate himself in the White House for 10 days to avoid infecting others. His physician, Dr. Sean Conley, told reporters that the president has “met or exceeded all standard hospital discharge criteria,” even as he cautioned that Trump could face a relapse and is not “entirely out of the woods yet.”
“If we can get through [next] Monday … then we will all take that deep sigh of relief,” he said.
By the numbers
California cases and deaths as of 4:00 p.m. PDT Monday:
Track the latest numbers and how they break down in California with our graphics.
See the current status of California’s reopening, county by county, with our tracker.
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