US President Donald Trump said on Thursday he is in quarantine waiting for the results of his COVID-19 test after Hope Hicks, one of his closest aides, tested positive for the disease.
“I just went to the test and we’ll see what happens,” he told Fox News, confirming that Hicks has the virus and saying he is waiting for the results on Thursday or Friday night.
He then tweeted that he and First Lady Melanie Trump, who also carriedout the test, are currently in quarantine.
It was stated that Hicks is suffering from the symptoms of COVID-19 which usually include fever and cough.
Hicks regularly travels with the president aboard the Air Force and accompanies him to Cleveland for the first presidential debate with Democrat Joe Biden on Tuesday, along with other senior officials.
She was also with Trump at a Minnesota election event on Wednesday and returned with him to the White House in a Marine One helicopter after the rally.
More than 200,000 Americans have died from COVID-19 and Trump was severely criticized for his response to the pandemic. He and his assistants rarely wear masks, as do many of the thousands of supporters present at his campaign rallies.
Responding to a question about Hicks, White House spokesman Judd Deer said: “The President takes his health and safety very seriously, and the health and safety of all those who work to support him and the American people.”
Tests, but no masks
Deere said the White House follows protocols “for limiting COVID-19 exposure to the greatest extent possible both on complex and when the president is travelling.”
While Trump was condemning people wearing masks, health officials say wearing a mask is one of the most important things people can do to help prevent the virus from spreading.
According to Leah Mills of Reuters, Hope Hicks, Senior Advisor to US President Donald Trump, went with him to a campaign event earlier this week in Minnesota.
Trump and his aides are regularly checked for the virus, as are some of those who are often seen in the White House, including some journalists.
But the White House has stopped regularly checking the temperature of everyone who entered the compound a few months ago, and people who are checked for the virus interact with others who don’t.
A month before the presidential election, Steve Clemons, the owner of Al-Jazeera’s The Bottom Line, said that the USA was facing an unprecedented situation.
“We have a fight brewing over who might fill the Supreme Court seat vacated by the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and now one of President Trump’s most intimate aides, Hope Hicks, who has tested positive after flying to a campaign rally with the Trumps in Minnesota,” he said. “Many people had been worrying about COVID passing in these kinds of rallies. It’s an extraordinary moment. If he is truly waiting for the results it shows how bad the testing regime is in America.”
The spokesperson for Vice President Mike Penns, Kathy Miller, had tested positive for the virus earlier this year, and she had symptoms before she recovered.
The Bloomberg news agency reported for the first time that Hicks was testing positive for the virus.
Hicks returned to the White House earlier this year after working in the private sector for a period of time. Previously, she was the White House Director of Communications and spokesperson for the Trump presidential campaign in 2016.