More Evasion: Trump Doctor Press Briefing Number 2, Analyzed
2nd doc press brief: More evasiveness.
(A) Yesterday, I pointed out that what they *refuse* to talk about is where we find the truth. I pinpointed the exact window of location and time that they were not officially stating that Trump did not need supplemental oxygen, and said he must have had it at the WH during that time. The Chief of Staff's leak forced Conley to confess that today. When confronted, he admitted he withheld the info to paint a rosier picture.
(B) Meanwhile, let's look at what was, and was not, stated today.
(1) First off, Conley is not an MD. He's a DO. There are some subtle differences there.
(2) Conley previously had only emphasized T having no fever at the moment of the presser. Today he admitted (hand forced by Chief of Staff) that T's fever had previously been "high". When asked, he refused to clarify. That suggests it was probably at or over 101; 99 or 100 would be low-grade, and no reason to obfuscate.
(3) Hand forced by leak, again, he finally admitted there had been some oxygen saturation dips. However, when pressed for specific numbers, he said 2 things: 93 (which is under the ideal range of 95-100, but not precipitously), and "it didn't get to the low 80s or anything". Note: Medicare does not fund oxygen supplementation until levels are under 90. That's the standard of care. So at some point, T's oxygen was under 90. Since the doctor said not the low 80s, it is reasonable to deduce mid-80s.
(4) They brought in a doc from Johns Hopkins. Think about that. They already had a team of 13 people yesterday, at the naval hospital, plus the regular DO. They brought in someone else. From an academic research facility. That someone is Dr. Garibaldi. Do you know what it said on his coat? Critical Care. Do you know that that means? It suggests T either was in, or was expected to need, a state of critical care.
(5) Conley said that "kidney, liver, cardiac" functions had all been "normal or improving". That is very significant. Those are 2 different things. Improving can mean from a state that was not normal. Then Garibaldi said that "kidney and liver" were "good" and **he did not mention cardiac functions**. That is a glaring omission literally less than a minute after the prior sentence. That suggests that the function that was not normal was the cardiac function. That is highly significant, given yesterday there was emphasis on normal BP -- but the way it was phrased was that his usual systolic was 110-120 and that the readings had not been abnormal (which would mean over 140), could have been slightly elevated.
(6) They acknowledged they added dexamethasone. This is a high-powered glucocorticoid steroid of which there have been clinical trials that its IV administration reduced fatalities of COVID patients who were on ventilators or supplemental oxygen, but which had no reduction in fatalities for those not on respiratory support.
Here are the study results from the New England Journal of Medicine.
Now, sure, maybe, when you're one of the most powerful bullies in the world, from a life of privilege, you can force the hand of doctors to get extra medicine even when it's not clinically indicated. Or, maybe, they're not being honest about what else is going on in his lungs. Let's check that, shall we? I'm glad you asked, because:
(7) Conley admitted that there was a second dip in T's oxygen levels, but in addition to refusing to say how low, he refused to say the time, or whether any additional supplemental oxygen was administered. He deflected that to say that someone would have to ask the nurses. I hope someone does.
(8) When a reporter asked what the results were of the CT scan or chest x-ray, whether there had been any findings of pneumonia or infiltrates, Garibaldi answered that there were "we are tracking expected findings". The likelihood is there was something or they would have said all-clear. The likelihood is something or they would not have needed a 14th member of their doctor team and one who is a critical care lung specialist from a research facility. The likelihood is there was something or they would not have added yet another experimental medication on top of the monoclonal antibodies and remdesivir already being experimented with on him. Tracking a finding means there was something found, something that one envisions could worsen.
(9) A reporter asked if T was in a "negative pressure room" and they refused to answer.
(10) A reporter asked why T was not wearing a mask in the video on Twitter. Conley responded only by saying the doctors were in N95s and PPE, and that "if" T begins to ambulate into "public" areas, that "then we'll talk about" a mask. Reading between the lines suggests he's ambulating without a mask.
(11) They stated a lung spirometry of "over 2500" this refers to the ability to forcibly exhale. I do not have the clinical ability to say what that number signifies. Normally spirometry is rendered as percentages of expect levels.
(12) A reporter very specifically demanded to know why Conley deliberately mislead the whole world about the oxygen supplementation at press briefing #1, as was immediately exposed by the Chief of Staff, but now he was confessing. The Spin-Doctor-in-chief DO Conley replied, "That's a good question." He then said, "I was trying to reflect an upbeat attitude. I didn't want to give any information that would steer the course of the illness," but that he works "side-by-side" with the Chief of Staff, and that he realized that, "It sounded like we were hiding something, and that wasn't necessarily the case."
Notice the extra word there?
Not necessarily the case. Means it could have been the case.
Was it? Let's each see what we think about that.
(13) They are publicly stating they could release him to the WH "to continue treatment there" as early as tomorrow.
Clinically, someone is considered infectious until 10 days after symptom onset.
They would be sending him out a week early for optics, putting everyone working in the WH or sleeping wherever he sleeps at risk.
(14) Speaking of sleep, yesterday the question was raised was he positioned prone. Conley said T asked about that, but that they had felt it was not indicated. No further talk on that today.
(15) The incubation period of the coronavirus is such that it takes 2 to 14 days for symptoms to manifest. He was symptomatic Thursday.
This means that he caught it absolutely no later than Tuesday. Which means he almost definitely exposed Biden and the moderator. Which means them being tested Thursday was probably too soon and they should test again daily for 2 weeks.
And the fact the Trump entourage "arrived too late" to be tested before entering the debate Tuesday means we still don't know what his test results were most recently before the debate and pos/neg, and that we still don't know if he knowingly deliberately exposed Biden and moderator, rather than cancel the spotlight time.
(15) Remember. He does not get brownie points for coming forward as pos. Bloomberg revealed Hope Hicks' pos test.
That forced his hand.
And that's a wrap on today's press briefing. What do you all think?