ABC News' Medical Expert Raises Concerns Over Glaring Omissions In Biden's Physical Report

By Maria Angelino | Sunday, 03 March 2024 04:30 PM
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The physical and mental health of President Biden, who is seeking re-election in 2024, has been a subject of intense scrutiny.

Despite being declared fit for the presidency following his recent annual exam, questions persist about his overall health. Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News' chief medical correspondent, was asked to weigh in on the matter during an episode of "The View," but she refrained from giving a definitive answer, stating, "I am not his physician."

Dr. Ashton, who is also the chief medical correspondent for "Good Morning America," was asked to compare President Biden's health to that of other men his age. She humorously remarked that she, as a 54-year-old woman, would struggle with the demands of the presidency. However, she also pointed out what she perceived as "glaring omissions" in the publicly released report of the President's physical exam.

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"We do what’s called a review of systems any time we do a physical exam on someone," Dr. Ashton explained. "That includes not only just general neurologic evaluation, but a mental evaluation, a screening for depression or psychiatric illness, mental illness, anxiety — not in there. Cognitive exam — not in there."

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While the report was deemed comprehensive by the President's physician, Dr. Ashton suggested that healthcare professionals would notice the absence of certain elements. Co-host Joy Behar then asked if Dr. Ashton believed the President was capable of performing his duties, to which she responded, "I am not his physician, but again, he does have a qualified physician, and it was a thorough report, but something is missing."

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The results of President Biden's physical exam were released by the White House on Wednesday afternoon, following his visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The statement from Dr. Kevin O'Connor, the Physician for the President, affirmed that Biden was fit to "successfully execute the duties of the presidency."

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"President Biden is a healthy, active 81-year-old male, who remains fit to successfully execute the duties of the Presidency, to include those as Chief Executive, Head of State and Commander in Chief," the statement read.

Despite the President's occasionally stiff gait, Dr. O'Connor confirmed that it had not deteriorated over the past year. The White House also confirmed that a cognitive test was not part of the President's examination.

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White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre reiterated Dr. O'Connor's assessment, stating, "The President proves every day [in] how he operates and how he thinks, by dealing with world leaders, by making difficult decisions on behalf of the American people — whether it's domestic or it's national security."

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