Doctor who criticised Trump’s hospital stunt removed from Walter Reed schedule

Sources familiar with the situation told CBS News on Monday that Dr James Phillips will be taken off the hospital’s rota from January next year.

After nearly two days in the facility in October, Mr Trump was driven around outside the medical centre by his protective detail as he waved to his supporters who had waited for him since his admission to the hospital for coronavirus treatment.

Pictured in the vehicle with Mr Trump were two members of his protective detail wearing face masks and eye protection, while the president was also seen with a face covering in the back seat of the car.

Dr Phillips, who is chief of disaster medicine at George Washington University and serves as an attending physician on a contract basis for Walter Reed, was the only physician at the facility to publicly criticise Mr Trump for the stunt.

In a now deleted tweet on 4 October, Dr Phillips wrote: “Every single person … in the vehicle during that completely unnecessary Presidential ‘drive-by’ just now has to be quarantined for 14 days.

“They might get sick. They may die. For political theatre. Commanded by Trump to put their lives at risk for theatre. This is insanity.”

Officials from Walter Reed denied to CBS on Monday that they made the decision to pull the doctor off the medical centre’s schedule.

They said that the hospital “provides requirements for contract positions. Schedules are determined by the contractor.

“There was no decision made by anyone at WRNMMC to remove Dr Phillips from the schedule.”

Dr Phillips’s contractor GW Medical Faculty Associates did not respond to a request for comment from The Independent.

Dr Phillips’s colleagues also said that they were surprised that he was taken off the schedule, amid a rise of coronavirus cases in Maryland and across the US.

Since the start of the pandemic, Maryland has reported at least 218,000 coronavirus cases and 4,865 deaths.

According to a tracking project by Baltimore’s Johns Hopkins University, there are now more than 14.9 million people who have tested positive for coronavirus in the US. The death toll has reached at least 283,734.

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