Donald Trump, 74, and his wife Melania, 50, are self-isolating after receiving their positive coronavirus result.
Donald Trump and his wife Melania have tested positive for coronavirus.
The president said in a tweet posted early on Friday morning: “Tonight, @FLOTUS and I tested positive for COVID-19. We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!”
Mr Trump, 74, earlier said he and the first lady, 50, were self-isolating after Hope Hicks, one of his top aides, tested positive.
Melania Trump tweeted: “As too many Americans have done this year, @potus & I are quarantining at home after testing positive for COVID-19. We are feeling good & I have postponed all upcoming engagements.
“Please be sure you are staying safe & we will all get through this together.”
A letter from Sean Conley, physician to Mr Trump, confirmed the positive test on Thursday and said the president and first lady would remain at the White House during their isolation.
It added: “The White House medical team and I will maintain a vigilant watch, and I appreciate the support provided by some of our country’s greatest medical professionals and institutions.
“Rest assured I expect the president to continue carrying out his duties without disruption while recovering, and I will keep you updated on any future developments.”
Ms Hicks, 31, who serves as a counsellor to the president, reportedly tested positive for the disease on Thursday, the day after she travelled with the president to a rally. She is the closest aide to Mr Trump to test positive for coronavirus so far.
She has travelled with the president a number of times during the past week, including on presidential helicopter Marine One, and on Air Force One to Tuesday night’s first presidential debate.
Mr Trump earlier appeared to blame soldiers and law enforcement officials for Ms Hicks contracting the virus.
“It’s very, very hard when you are with people from the military or from law enforcement and they come over to you and they want to hug you and they want to kiss you,” he told Fox News.
“You get close and things happen.”
Several White House staffers have tested positive for the virus, including Vice President Mike Pence’s press secretary Katie Miller, and one of the president’s personal valets.https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.414.0_en.html#goog_48380178Play Video – Trump on aide testing positive for COVIDThe president said earlier: ‘Whether we have it, I don’t know’
The positive tests come as the virus continues to spread at an alarming rate in the US, even as Mr Trump has tried to downplay the threat of the disease.
He has continued to hold campaign rallies which have drawn thousands of supporters during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The positive test also comes just a month before the US presidential election on 3 November.
Two days before testing positive, during the first debate, Mr Trump belittled his Democratic challenger Joe Biden for frequently wearing masks and not having campaign rallies that matched his own in size.
Mr Trump’s age and weight put him at higher risk of serious complications from COVID-19. Last year, his medical revealed he met the technical threshold for obesity.
He continued to shake hands with visitors despite public health officials warning against it and also initially resisted being tested. Mr Trump also refused to wear a mask in public under almost all circumstances.
In a statement, White House spokesman Judd Deere said: “The president takes the health and safety of himself and everyone who works in support of him and the American people very seriously.
“White House Operations collaborates with the physician to the president and the White House Military Office to ensure all plans and procedures incorporates current CDC guidance and best practices for limiting COVID-19 exposure to the greatest extent possible both on complex and when the president is travelling.”
More than 200,000 people have died in the US after contracting coronavirus and more than seven million have been infected.