Washington: US President Donald Trump is being transferred from the White House to a nearby hospital and is expected to stay there for several days, in a concerning development in his battle with COVID-19.
The news came soon after Trump's physician released a statement describing the President as "fatigued" and saying the he had been given an experimental antibody cocktail.
Marine One on the White House South Lawn, awaiting to transfer US President Donald Trump to the Walter Reed Medical Centre. Credit:AP
The official presidential helicopter, Marine One, landed on the White House lawn on Saturday (AEST) in order to transfer Trump to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Maryland.
"Out of an abundance of caution, and at the recommendation of his physician and medical experts, the President will be working from the presidential offices at Walter Reed for the next few days," the White House said in a statement.
The White House stressed that no transfer of power had taken place and that Trump, rather than Vice-President Mike Pence, remained in charge of the executive branch of government.
Trump has not made any further public statements, including on his Twitter feed, since he announced that he and wife Melania had tested positive for coronavirus.
Earlier, the Trump campaign announced that all the President's upcoming events are being temporarily postponed, or moved to a virtual setting, following his diagnosis. It is unclear if Trump will be able to participate in the next presidential debate, scheduled for October 15.
Members of the US Secret Service stand outside Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre, in Bethesda, Maryland.Credit:AP
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she greeted the news of Trump's positive diagnosis with "great sadness", adding that she hoped it would be a "learning experience" for those who have downplayed the virus.
"This is tragic, it's very sad," Pelosi told MSNBC. "But also is something that, again, going into crowds unmasked and all the rest, was sort of a brazen invitation for something like this to happen."
On Friday morning (Saturday AEST) Vice-President Mike Pence announced that he had tested negative for the virus, as did Democratic nominee Joe Biden.
"I'm happy to report that Jill and I have tested negative for COVID," Biden said in a statement.
"Thank you to everyone for your messages of concern. I hope this serves as a reminder: wear a mask, keep social distance, and wash your hands."
Earlier in the day Biden and his wife Jill wished the President and first lady a "swift recovery".
"We will continue to pray for the health and safety of the president and his family," Biden said on Twitter.
More to come
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