Trump Again Tests Negative for Coronavirus, Calls New Test 'Much More Pleasant'

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Posted: Apr 02, 2020 9:04 PM
Trump Again Tests Negative for Coronavirus, Calls New Test 'Much More Pleasant'

Source: Official White House Photo by D. Myles Cullen

At the White House press briefing on Thursday, President Trump announced that he had once again tested negative for the coronavirus. The president's remarks were made shortly after White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham released a memo from the president's physician, Dr. Sean Conley, informing the president of his negative results. 

"This morning, the President was tested again for COVID-19, utilizing a new, rapid point-of-care test capability. He is healthy and without symptoms. Sample collection took just one minute, and results were reported back in 15 minutes. The president tested negative for COVID-19," the doctor writes in the memo. 

The president originally tested negative for the coronavirus last month after reports indicated the president interacted with persons infected with the coronavirus.

Trump said he took the latest test to try out a recently approved test that delivers results more quickly.

"I've done them both and the second one is much more pleasant," Trump told reporters at the press briefing.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted emergency approval for a rapid COVID-19 test on Saturday that delivers results back in under 15 minutes. Abbott, the company behind the test, says the test is the "fastest available molecular point-of-care test for novel coronavirus." 

The company says the new test can deliver positive results for COVID-19 in as little as five minutes and negative results in 13 minutes. The test can also be administered outside the traditional hospital setting. The test involves a 6.6-lb box that is similar in size to a small toaster.

Dr. Deborah Brix, a coronavirus task force medical expert for the White House, said the new tests are currently being distributed, prioritizing the Indian Health Services to meet the needs of remote populations and the public health labs to "support nursing home testing and other areas where we think surveillance is absolutely key."