'Not helpful': UNC physician responds to Trump's reflections on COVID-19
Dr. David Wohl, an infectious disease specialist at UNC Health, reacts to President Donald Trump's behavior upon leaving Walter Reed Medical Center, where he was treated for COVID-19.Posted — Updated
Upon his release from the hospital, Trump tweeted, "Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life."
"So many people have lost loved ones," he said. "To say that we can’t let this virus dominate us really mocks the people who fought really hard to survive and didn't. This isn't a test of wills, this is a very bad virus ... we can't predict exactly who it will hurt and who it will not hurt."
Wohl also said the president's message "is not helpful at all."
"We need leadership at this time," he said. "From a president who now has succumb to COVID-19 himself and become ill and had to be hospitalized, I was hoping we would see a different message."
Wohl said everyone, especially someone who tested positive for coronavirus, should be social distancing, and the president's behavior doesn't reflect that.
"The president's message that we should not fear this virus, that he should take off his mask in front of other people and be around other unmasked people, really does send the wrong message," Wohl said. "Fear is not the problem. Denial is the problem, and that is, unfortunately, what I think we are seeing right now."
"I think anybody who is awake and aware knows that this is not just flu season," Wohl said. "We have had a global shutdown. This pandemic has filled our ICUs and our hospitals. Unfortunately, I really am getting frustrated that the White House is sending signals to minimize what has really been devastating for all of us."
During his treatment, Trump was administered the antiviral drug remdesivir and the powerful steroid dexamethasone, two widely-used drugs that are available to patients hospitalized with COVID-19.
He also got a dose of an experimental drug, Regeneron's REGN-COV2 antibody cocktail, which is still being used in clinical trials and is not yet widely available.
According to White House staff, the president is feeling well. He is now recovering at the White House, where he will receive the final phases of his medical care, including a dose of remdesivir.
Copyright 2024 by Capitol Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.