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Trump wears mask during visit with wounded service members at Walter Reed

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President Donald Trump arrives at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center to visit with wounded military members and front line coronavirus healthcare workers in Bethesda, Maryland on Saturday.Trump wore a face mask in public for the first time. Photo by Chris Kleponis/UPI | License Photo

July 12 (UPI) — President Donald Trump wore a mask while visiting wounded members at Walter Reed National Military Center in Bethesda, Md.

Trump was seen wearing the facial covering while walking with staff, who also were wearing protection amid the coronavirus pandemic. The president briefly wore a mask while visiting a Ford Motor Co. plant in Ypsilanti, Mich., in May, but this is the first time that the White House press corps saw him with a face covering.

“Had the privilege of accompanying President @realdonaldtrump to Walter Reed where he visited with wounded veterans,” deputy press secretary Judd Deere posted on Twitter. We owe so much to these warriors. The President listened to their stories, answered their questions, thanked them for their bravery, and told them he loved them.”

Trump also was accompanied by Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff.

Trump did not discus his visit to the hospital upon arriving on the South Lawn of the White House at 6:34 p.m., according to a White House pool report.

“I’ll probably have a mask if you must know. I’ll probably have a mask,” Trump told reporters before departing from the White House. “I think when you’re in a hospital especially in that particular setting, where you are talking to a lot of soldiers, people that in some cases just got off the operating table. I think it’s a great thing to wear a mask. I’ve never been against masks but I do believe they have a time and a place.”

Visitors “are expected to wear a cloth face covering over their nose and mouth upon entering and while moving about the facility… when not able to maintain 6 feet of social distancing,” according to the Reed website.

The Trump administration has not required Americans to wear masks during the pandemic.

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