With weeks left until election day, President Donald Trump is claiming he has been cured of COVID-19 and wants to hit the campaign trail to hold rallies. But experts say he’s still contagious a week after the White House said he was diagnosed and holding rallies could put his staff and the public at risk.
“I think I’m better to a point where I’d love to do a rally tonight. I wanted to do one last night. But I think I’m better to a point that I feel better than I did, you know, I jokingly said 20 years ago. I feel perfect. There’s nothing wrong,” Trump said in a Thursday interview with Fox Business News.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, it is not yet known with certainty how long someone with COVID-19 sheds the virus and remains infectious.
However, “based on current evidence,” scientists believe that those with mild to moderate COVID-19 may shed the virus for up to 10 days following the onset of symptoms. A small portion of people with severe illness may shed the virus for up to 20 days.
“It’s potentially exposing many people, not only the rally goers, too, but also the staff, the secret service agents, the individuals who will have to travel with him,” former Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen said on CNN. “This is totally irresponsible. I cannot believe that we’re even talking about this.”