Dr. James Phillips responded Sunday night to his removal from the Walter Reed Medical Center schedule, which came after he criticized the car ride President Donald Trump took during his coronavirus hospitalization in October.
“Today, I worked my final shift at Walter Reed ER,” he wrote on Twitter. “I will miss the patients and my military and civilian coworkers – they have been overwhelmingly supportive. I’m honored to have worked there and I look forward to new opportunities. I stand by my words, and I regret nothing.”
Phillips publicly criticized Trump’s Oct. 4 quarantine break, which saw him leaving the medical center where he was hospitalized with COVID-19 to wave to supporters from a vehicle staffed by Secret Service agents.
In a since-deleted tweet from that day, 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 theater. Commanded by Trump to put their lives at risk for theater. This is insanity.”
Those on social media, for the most part, agreed, taking note of Trump’s decision to leave the hospital while still in treatment for the contagious virus that had, at that point, taken the lives of more than 210,000 Americans. As of Monday, over 333,000 have now died, though the president — and numerous Republicans close to him — recovered after receiving top-level care at facilities like Walter Reed.
Earlier this month, Walter Reed officials denied they made the decision to remove Phillips, telling CBS News 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.”
On Monday, Phillips received more online support as Twitter users thanked him for his “integrity” and refusal to back down.