Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson revealed on Friday that he had been “desperately ill” with COVID-19, but is now “out of the woods” after previously testing positive for the virus earlier this month.
At the time of his diagnosis, Carson’s office said he was in good spirits, but in a new Facebook post the 69-year-old HUD secretary said he was “extremely sick” before he took the herbal remedy Oleander 4X and saw his condition improve.
“However,” Carson went on, “I have several co-morbidities and after a brief period when I only experienced minor discomfort, the symptoms accelerated and I became desperately ill.” He elaborated that “President Trump was following my condition and cleared me for the monoclonal antibody therapy that he had previously received, which I am convinced saved my life.”
“President Trump, the fabulous White House medical team, and the phenomenal doctors at Walter Reed have been paying very close attention to my health and I do believe I am out of the woods at this point,” he said.
He added that he wants the U.S. to focus on getting “comparable treatments and care to everyone as soon as possible” and criticized those who have said shortcuts may be taken in approving a coronavirus vaccine, saying that such a claim “only serves to stoke fear.”
Carson, who has served in his role since 2017 and more recently was appointed to the Trump administration’s coronavirus task force, is one of a number of government officials who have contracted the virus, including President Trump himself.
Carson’s diagnosis came days after White House chief of staff Mark Meadows announced that he had tested positive for the virus. Both had attended an election-night party at the White House. At the time of Meadows’ diagnosis, five other White House officials also tested positive for the virus.