(CNSNews.com) - President Donald Trump is telling the nation not to let COVID "dominate your lives."
"Don't be afraid of it," he advised. "You're going to beat it."
Returning to the White House after almost three days at Walter Reed Medical Center, President Trump faced the cameras and pointedly removed his face mask.
Later Monday night, Trump posted another video to Twitter, saying he knew the danger posed by the highly contagious virus, but "I stood out front. I led. Nobody that's a leader would not do what I did."
According to his doctors, Trump has not yet fully recovered from his illness, but he's getting the medical care he needs at home.
At least 197,029 people have died from COVID in this country, according to the official death toll based on death certificates submitted to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics.
Here are the president's full remarks, intended to reassure the country but already producing more scorching criticism, as deaths from the virus keep rising:
I just left Walter Reed Medical Center, and it's really something very special. The doctors, the nurses, the first responders. And I learned so much about coronavirus. And one thing that's for certain.
Don't let it dominate you. Don't be afraid of it. You're going to beat it. We have the best medical equipment. We have the best medicines, all developed recently. And you're going to beat it.
I went -- I didn't feel so good. And two days ago -- I could've left two days ago, two days ago I felt great, like better than I have a long time. I said just recently, better than 20 years ago.
Don't let it dominate. Don't let it take over your lives. Don't let that happen. We have the greatest country in the world. We're going back. We're going back to work. We're going to be out front. As your leader, I had to do that. I knew there's danger to it, but I had to do it. I stood out front. I led. Nobody that's a leader would not do what I did.
And I know there's a risk. There's a danger. But that's okay. And now I'm better, and maybe I'm immune, I don't know. But don't let it dominate your lives. Get out there. Be careful.
We have the best medicines in the world. And it all happened very shortly. And they're all getting approved. And the vaccines are coming momentarily. Thank you very much. And Walter Reed, what a group of people. Thank you very much.
Steve Cortes, a senior campaign adviser to the Trump campaign, told Fox News's Laura Ingraham Monday night it's not Trump's fault that he contracted COVID: "All precautions were taken," Cortes said, despite criticism of Trump's many appearances among maskless crowds.
"The only people who are culpable or to blame for the coronavirus is the Chinese Communist Party," Cortes said.
Cortes said the recovering president intends to "continue our path towards normalcy" with the goal of "rebuilding prosperity in this country."