The US media has claimed that the doctor’s letter lavishing praise on Donald Trump’s “astonishingly excellent” health was not written by the Republican’s physician but was dictated by Trump himself.
Dr Harold Bornstein, who was Mr Trump’s doctor for 35 years until he entered the White House, told CNN his billionaire patient actually dictated the whole letter in December 2015 before the Trump campaign released it to the media.
“He dictated that whole letter. I didn’t write that letter,” Dr Bornstein told the cable news network on Tuesday.
“I just made it up as I went along.”
The new claims are the opposite of what Dr Bornstein said just over two years ago, when he put his name and signature to the hyperbolic letter. Of Mr Trump, it said: “His physical strength and stamina are extraordinary.
“If elected, Mr Trump, I can state unequivocally, will be the healthiest individual ever elected to the presidency.”
The letter gave few medical details to support such claims, let alone delving into the medical records of past presidents. It said that Mr Trump’s blood pressure clocked in at 110/65 — calling those results “astonishingly excellent” — and said that he had lost 15 pounds in the past year.
Mr Trump’s cardiovascular health, it said, was “excellent”.
The White House has not yet commented on Dr Bornstein’s allegation, but it comes following a separate interview with NBC News in which the physician claimed his offices were “raided” by White House officials in 2017, and that Mr Trump’s original medical records were all seized.
Dr Bornstein’s media interviews come after the man who pipped him to the role of Trump White House doctor, Ronny Jackson, failed in a bid to become Veteran’s Affairs secretary. Dr Bornstein said reports that Dr Jackson will now not return to his post as White House doctor were a cause for “celebration for me”.
As for the alleged “raid” on his offices, Dr Bornstein said it took place in 2017 two days after he told reporters from the New York Times that he had prescribed hair medication for Mr Trump for years.
Those claims were met by the alleged arrival of Mr Trump’s longtime bodyguard, Keith Schiller, and another man, who demanded he release the documents. Mr Schiller was in charge of Oval Office operations at the time.
Dr Bornstein told NBC News the “raid” left him feeling “raped, frightened and sad”.
The White House spokesperson Sarah Huckabee Sanders did not deny that officials had visited Dr Bornstein, but said taking medical records is standard operating procedure for a new president, and disputed the characterisation of the incident as a “raid”.