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‘I could be one of the diers’: Trump recognized own mortality after COVID-19 diagnosis, according to a report from New York Magazine

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  • President Donald Trump said he “could be one of the diers” in an October 3 phone call after he was hospitalized following his COVID-19 diagnosis, according to New York Magazine’s Intelligencer.
  • On Friday, Intelligencer published details from the phone call, showing a perspective of the president that comes in stark contrast with his largely optimistic tone since contracting the disease.
  • In the call last Saturday, the president said he was feeling good but admitted that he still had some uncertainty in his wellbeing with the coronavirus, according to the Intelligencer article.
  • “This thing could go either way,” Trump said, citing Intelligencer’s article. “It’s tricky. They told me it’s tricky. You can tell it can go either way.”
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump recognized his own mortality following his COVID-19 diagnosis in a phone call last week, according to details published on Friday by New York Magazine’s Intelligencer.

According to the article, the president painted a grim reality on October 3, a day after he and First Lady Melania Trump announced that they tested positive for COVID-19 and after he was transported to Walter Reed Medical Center to undergo testing and treatment.

“I could be one of the diers,” Trump said during the call, repeating the line once more, according to the article. At the time, the US passed the grim milestone of more than 200,000 deaths from the coronavirus. As of Friday, October 9, less than a week after the call, the US death toll surpassed 213,000.

The statement comes in stark contrast from the largely optimistic tone Trump has adopted since his diagnosis. The president even initially resisted staying at Walter Reed, saying “I don’t need to go. I’m fine. I’m fine. We have everything we need here,” according to a person who spoke to him, Intelligencer’s Olivia Nuzzi reported.

The White House said Trump’s hospital stay was “out of an abundance of caution,” and in a video posted on Twitter, Trump himself said last Friday, “I’m going to Walter Reed hospital. I think I’m doing very well, but we’re going to make sure that things work out.”

The president took a number of experimental drugs and therapies for COVID-19 in a bid to treat the disease, but Americans have been left largely in the dark as the White House put out vague statements on the status of their commander-in-chief.

In the call, the president said he was feeling good but admitted that he still had some uncertainty in his wellbeing with the coronavirus.

“This thing could go either way,” Trump said, citing the article. “It’s tricky. They told me it’s tricky. You can tell it can go either way.”

The president left Walter Reed earlier this week and returned to the White House. He has asserted multiple times that he is on the road to recovery from the disease but has yet to release a negative COVID-19 test.

White House physician Dr. Sean Conley said in a statement that scans taken at the hospital showed “expected findings but nothing of any major clinical concern,” but failed to clarify what those findings were.

During an interview Friday evening with Fox News’ contributor Dr. Marc Seigel, Trump revealed a few more details into his condition, saying lung scans “initially” showed some “congestion.”

“They tested the lungs … with different machinery …, and it tested good,” he said. “Initially, I think they had some congestion in there, but ultimately it tested good, and with each day it got better, and I think that’s why they wanted me to stay frankly.”

Asked by the doctor on Fox News if he had been tested again for the virus, Trump said: “I have been re-tested and I haven’t even found out the numbers or anything yet, but I’ve been re-tested and I know I’m at either the bottom of the scale or free.”

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