President Trump’s 14-year-old son, Barron, tested positive for COVID-19 but did not show any symptoms, first lady Melania Trump disclosed Wednesday, about two weeks after it was revealed that she and the president had contracted the disease.
Both President Trump and the first lady tested positive for COVID-19 on Oct. 1 and appear to have since recovered from the disease that has so far killed more than 216,000 Americans. In an update posted Wednesday afternoon on the White House website, Melania Trump said Barron did not initially test positive for COVID-19 following his parents’ diagnosis. His positive result came in a subsequent test, the first lady wrote.
“Luckily he is a strong teenager and exhibited no symptoms,” she said in her statement. “In one way I was glad the three of us went through this at the same time so we could take care of one another and spend time together. He [Barron] has since tested negative.”
As the president was leaving the White House for a campaign rally in Des Moines, Iowa, on Wednesday afternoon, Trump told reporters on the South Lawn that “Barron’s fine.”
Hours later, Trump told the attendees at his Iowa rally that “Barron Trump, you know, he had the corona-19, the China virus,” adding that his son “had it for such a short period of time, I don’t even think he knew he had it.”
Melania Trump said she was fortunate that her own diagnosis came with “minimal symptoms” and added that she chose to go the “more natural route in terms of medicine, opting more for vitamins and healthy food.” She wrote that she has tested negative for COVID-19 and hopes to resume her duties soon.
The president returned to the campaign trail this week. The White House medical team announced last weekend that he had tested negative “on consecutive days,” after having been treated for COVID-19 for nearly four days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
While hospitalized, Trump was given steroids and experimental drugs.
Trump became ill after hosting a series of events that largely ignored social distancing measures designed to stop the spread of the virus. Dozens of attendees at those events, including the Sept. 26 Rose Garden announcement of Amy Coney Barrett as Trump’s pick to replace the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court, were also sickened with COVID-19.
It is unclear whether Barron attended the Sept. 26 event.
The White House has declined to reveal precisely how many staffers have fallen ill in recent weeks. Trump’s team has also repeatedly refused to say when he last tested negative for COVID-19 prior to his diagnosis, raising questions about how often the president was being tested for the virus and whether he attended rallies and other events where he might have infected others