US President Donald Trump has been transferred to a military hospital after he and First Lady Melania Trump tested positive for coronavirus.
The 74-year-old is reported to be doing “very well” and does not need oxygen support, though he has begun receiving an experimental anti-viral drug.
“In consultation with specialists we have elected to initiate Remdesivir therapy," White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany wrote in a memo Friday.
The drug was approved for emergency use by the US Food and Drug Administration in May, after evidence suggested it could help Covid-19 patients recover faster.
Trump, who is clinically obese and in a heightened virus risk category, is expected to remain in the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre, in Maryland, for “the next few days”.
Online videos showed supporters – mostly not wearing masks – outside the facility late on Friday waving Trump 2020 flags.
Trump’s former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, who was questioned over the White House’s “Covid competence” by the BBC on Saturday, said the president’s positive Covid-19 test shows “nobody is immune from the virus”.
Meanwhile Democratic House speaker Nancy Pelosi told MSNBC that moves by Trump to avoid masks, continue to shake hands and attend crowded campaign rallies during the pandemic were “a brazen invitation for something like this to happen”.
In exactly one month, Trump faces Joe Biden in the presidential election.