By David Schuman

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Hennepin Healthcare emergency physician says it was “a good move” to move President Donald Trump to a hospital “out of an abundance of caution.”

Dr. John Hick says the risk of severe COVID-19 disease for anyone Trump’s age is high.

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The White House physician, Sean P. Conley, says Trump has been given an antibody cocktail.

It’s a medicine not available to the public that the company, Regeneron, says has helped improve symptoms in trials of non-hospitalized patients.

“Moving him to the hospital may be to prevent any adverse side effects from that cocktail of antibodies or other medications, or maybe in anticipation of him being significantly worse,” Hick said.

Conley says the president is also taking zinc, vitamin D, heartburn medication, melatonin and a daily aspirin.

On Friday, Conley released the following statement about Trump’s health update:

“This afternoon, in consultation with specialist from Walter Reed and John Hopkins University, I recommended movement of the President up to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for further monitoring. This evening I am happy to report that the President is doing very well. He is not requiring any supplemental oxygen, but in consultation with specialists we have elected to initiate Remdesivir therapy. He has completed his first dose and is resting comfortably.”

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At the recommendation of doctors, Trump will be working out of Walter Reed Medical Center the next few days, a federal hospital in Bethesda, Maryland.

“They have a special area just for the president that’s reserved for his or her use at any time and is capable of providing any critical care services the president might need,” Hick said.

With such a wide range of possible outcomes for COVID-19, it’s hard for Hick to estimate a timeline on Trump’s recovery.

“At age 74, even a mild influenza-like illness could require quite a bit of recovery time and that’s assuming things don’t get worse,” he said. “Hopefully, the antibodies will do their job and prevent the severe complications of COVID that we’ve seen in many different age ranges but particularly in the older patient population.”

The White House press secretary said in a statement President Trump is in good spirits, has mild symptoms, and worked throughout the day Friday.

President Trump held events in Minnesota just before testing positive.

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Hick said it’s too early for people who attended to get tested. He recommended waiting a week or so.

David Schuman