Vancouver Sun

Fo­cus shifts to Trump's doc­tor amid con­fu­sion

- DAVID MILL­WARD Health · Medicine · U.S. News · US Politics · Politics · Donald Trump · Sean Conley · Mark Meadows · White House · United States of America · Jackson · University of Notre Dame · Notre Dame · Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine · United States Navy · NATO · Kandahar · Afghanistan · England · New England · Meadows · Emblem

Con­fus­ing re­ports about the state of Don­ald Trump's health have in­ten­si­fied the fo­cus on his physi­cian of the past two years, Sean Con­ley.

Dr. Con­ley's cau­tiously op­ti­mistic pro­nounce­ments were con­tra­dicted by Mark Mead­ows, the White House chief of staff, who said that he un­der­stood that the U.S. pres­i­dent's vi­tals had been “very con­cern­ing.” It is not the first time that a physi­cian to Trump has found him­self at the cen­tre of med­i­cal con­tro­versy. Dur­ing the last pres­i­den­tial cam­paign, Harold Born­stein, then Trump's doc­tor, re­leased a let­ter say­ing that he would be “the health­i­est in­di­vid­ual ever elected to the pres­i­dency.”

Ronny Jack­son, who was the first pres­i­den­tial physi­cian, also gave Trump a glow­ing med­i­cal tes­ti­mony, say­ing he had “great genes.”

Dr. Con­ley, who took on the role of pres­i­den­tial physi­cian in March 2018, deemed Trump to be in “very good health” fol­low­ing a phys­i­cal exam in Fe­bru­ary last year. Aged 40, Dr. Con­ley, a father of three who is mar­ried to a physi­cian, is be­lieved to be the first doc­tor of os­teopa­thy to hold the po­si­tion.

A grad­u­ate of the Univer­sity of Notre Dame, he stud­ied at the Philadel­phia Col­lege of Os­teo­pathic Medicine be­fore be­com­ing an emer­gency physi­cian with the U.S. Navy in 2006.

He later be­came the di­rec­tor of med­i­cal trauma at a NATO hos­pi­tal in Kan­da­har, Afghanista­n, where he re­ceived glow­ing re­views for his work, in­clud­ing be­ing awarded the Ro­ma­nian Em­blem of Hon­our for sav­ing the lives of a num­ber of sol­diers in­jured by a bomb.

As pres­i­den­tial physi­cian, Dr. Con­ley was thrust into the pub­lic spot­light in May when it emerged that Trump had been tak­ing the an­ti­malar­ial drug hy­drox­y­chloro­quine. While Trump hyped up the drug, which he had re­quested from his physi­cian, med­i­cal ex­perts voiced con­cern over its side-ef­fects and ques­tioned its use as a treat­ment for coro­n­avirus.

In a White House memo, Dr. Con­ley wrote that, af­ter dis­cus­sions with Trump, they con­cluded “the po­ten­tial ben­e­fit from treat­ment out­weighed the rel­a­tive risks.”

The fol­low­ing month, a study in The New Eng­land Jour­nal of Medicine con­cluded that hy­drox­y­chloro­quine was in­ef­fec­tive.

On Satur­day, Dr. Con­ley told re­porters that Trump was not tak­ing hy­drox­y­chloro­quine.

“We dis­cussed it, he asked about it. He's not on it now,” he said.

 ??  ?? Sean Con­ley
Sean Con­ley

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