President Donald Trump introduced in a tweet late Thursday night time that he and his spouse Melania have examined optimistic for the virus that causes Covid-19, the pandemic illness that has killed greater than one million folks worldwide in simply 9 months—and one whose severity the president has constantly downplayed.

It’s a unprecedented flip of occasions simply 32 days earlier than Election Day. White Home spokespeople had, solely hours earlier than, introduced that the president’s shut adviser Hope Hicks was unwell with Covid-19. She, the president, and the primary girl have had shut contact with innumerable aides, members of the family, marketing campaign workers, reporters, and safety element members who’ve accompanied the president on the path over the previous couple of weeks, together with to Tuesday’s debate with former vp Joe Biden. As lately as this week, the president and Vice President Mike Pence had been holding rallies with lots of of individuals, generally crowded into enclosed areas, principally with out sporting face masks—precisely the form of behaviors recognized to unfold the virus.

Precise particulars of the president’s sickness are scant; his doctor Sean Conley wrote a memorandum launched by the White Home press workplace saying that “the President and First Woman are each effectively presently.” Melania Trump tweeted, “We’re feeling good.” At a rally two weeks in the past, Trump instructed the gang that the virus “impacts nearly nobody.”

Not solely is that not true, however the potential penalties are way more extreme for people who find themselves older and overweight. In a bizarre twist of luck for Trump, although, Covid-19 has been round for lengthy sufficient that well being care employees and scientists have begun to provide you with methods to deal with it. Listed here are the sorts of choices well being care employees may think about for somebody just like the president.

Though folks of any age and any well being standing can get very sick and die from Covid-19, three of the issues that make the illness most dangerous are being male, outdated, and obese. That’s not nice for the president. Trump is 74 years outdated and, as of June, weighed 244 kilos. Technically that makes him mildly overweight. Throughout a whole inhabitants, all different issues being equal, Covid-19 kills hardly anybody below 50. However over 50, the numbers begin to climb. For folks older than their mid-seventies, the mortality price for Covid-19 is round four %. “In comparison with an 18- to 29-year-old, somebody aged 73 is about 5 occasions extra prone to be hospitalized and about 90 occasions extra prone to die of Covid,” says Bob Wachter, chair of the division of drugs at UC San Francisco. “When you’re as much as age 75, that loss of life quantity turns into 220 occasions extra prone to die.”

Weight problems makes the numbers even worse, although nobody’s actually positive why. So do different persistent diseases that always associate with age, like diabetes and coronary heart circumstances. “This has nothing to do with the president’s particular state of affairs, simply the chances in a inhabitants,” Wachter says. “However the odds of somebody that age with comorbidities getting sick sufficient to be hospitalized are effectively above 10 %, and the chances of dying are in all probability within the 5 to 10 % vary.”

The president’s physicians have repeatedly reported that he’s more healthy than even youthful, lighter males. (In fact, in 2015, when Trump was a candidate, he apparently dictated his personal physician’s letter.) Trump doesn’t smoke tobacco or drink alcohol, however he additionally doesn’t appear to interact in common train outdoors golf. And different bizarre occasions have given rise to issues and whispers that Trump’s well being was in reality secretly not so nice. Often, he appears to slur his phrases or appear unsteady at public occasions, as when he apparently had bother navigating down a shallow ramp after a speech on the US Army Academy. After which there was the sudden and unsatisfactorily defined emergency journey by motorcade to Walter Reed Medical Middle in 2019.

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