Dr. Drew Pinsky tests positive for COVID-19 months after apologizing for downplaying the virus

Sara M Moniuszko, USA TODAY
·3 min read

Months after apologizing for downplaying the coronavirus pandemic, celebrity doctor Drew Pinsky has revealed he tested positive for the virus.

In an Instagram post Tuesday, Pinsky, 62, known as "Dr. Drew," is seen in bed holding up a bottle of an electrolyte drink while his wife wears a face mask nearby. The caption noted his wife tested negative.

"Drew is home, under survelliance (sic) and fever is down. Thanks Dr. Zelenko, Dr. Yo and Dr. Jeff for the superior care and advice. Drew is feeling better and will hppefully (sic) get well soon."

In a following post, Pinsky appeared via video, explaining he has taken "a lot of good medication" and thanked his fans for their support.

"COVID is no fun, I don't recommend it, but I'm sort of through the viral phase, which is when the virus is reproducing," he said, before explaining he was "wishing for" a positive coronavirus test. "Because I had this terrible acute febrile illness and was testing negative, and if I did not have COVID, I had acute lymphocytic leukemia, which I did not want to have.

"So COVID would explain the whole thing nicely and we have some many good treatments now for COVID. And I look forward to the immunity on the other side of this."

People who recover from COVID-19 are believed to acquire at least some lasting immunity against the disease as their bodies produce protective antibodies and immune system memory, but evidence remains limited.

While reinfections of COVID-19 are still considered extremely unusual, according to health experts and the World Health Organization, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a statement last month that it is investigating some possible reinfections. It has not yet confirmed any.

In April, Pinsky apologized for a series of statements unspooled in a video in which he downplayed the coronavirus and suggested it was a “press-induced panic.”

“I wish I had gotten it right, but I got it wrong,” Pinsky said in a video.

Pinsky’s apology was prompted by an online video that put together clips from a series of appearances he made over two months. It’s a storytelling form that has gained steam with the pandemic: The Washington Post has done mashups focused on President Donald Trump and Fox News, while Comedy Central issued a video targeting conservative personalities.

The Pinsky video surfaced on Twitter, posted by someone who goes by the name “DroopsDr.” It was not possible to establish the person’s identity.

The video collects clips of Pinsky on his online show “Ask Dr. Drew,” his podcast “Dr. Drew After Dark” and other media appearances. He repeatedly suggested the coronavirus would be not as bad as the flu, at one point saying the probability of dying of coronavirus was less than being hit by an asteroid.

Contributing: Karen Weintraub, USA TODAY; The Associated Press

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Dr. Drew Pinsky tests positive for coronavirus, says it's 'no fun'