Trump's Officials Explain Why His Idea of Injecting Disinfectant Into Patients Won't Cure COVID-19

The president who himself said Thursday, “I’m not a doctor,” was questioned about whether it is safe for him to be making these claims.

“Respectfully sir, you’re the president and people tuning in to these briefings, they want to get information and guidance and want to know what to do. They’re not looking for rumors,” Washington Post reporter Phil Rucker said to Trump, drawing the president’s ire.

“Hey, Phil. I’m the president and you’re fake news,” Trump said back.

“It’s just a suggestion from a brilliant lab from a very, very smart — perhaps brilliant man — he’s talking about sun, he’s talking about heat, and you see the numbers,” Trump told Rucker, referencing Bryan’s earlier presentation. “So, that’s it. That’s all I have. I’m just here to present talent. I’m just here to present ideas because we want ideas to get rid of this thing.”

At least 46,000 people in the U.S. have died from the coronavirus, according to a New York Times tracker. There have been at least 861,000 confirmed cases of the virus across the country.

Federal health officials say a vaccine to treat the COVID-19 respiratory illness is at least a year to a year-and-a-half away from being readily available to the American public.

“We’re very close to a vaccine,” Trump claimed Thursday.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. To help provide doctors and nurses on the front lines with life-saving medical resources, donate to Direct Relief here.

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