President Trump’s longtime physician said Tuesday that he was aggressively cut out of the Trump orbit early last year and that two aides seized Mr. Trump’s medical records without authorization.
WASHINGTON — President Trump’s longtime physician said in an interview published Tuesday that after he told The New York Times that Mr. Trump took a drug to promote hair growth, two Trump aides staged what he called “a raid” of his Manhattan office in February 2017 and removed all of Mr. Trump’s medical files.
Dr. Harold N. Bornstein, who served as Mr. Trump’s personal doctor for 36 years, told NBC News that the roughly half-hour encounter left him feeling “raped, frightened and sad.” He said that since the president’s bodyguard, Keith Schiller, accompanied by a lawyer for the Trump Organization, Alan Garten, and a third man he did not recognize took the files, he has had no contact with Mr. Trump and been effectively removed from his orbit.
In a brief phone call with The Times on Tuesday, Dr. Bornstein did not elaborate on what he told NBC except to say that his earlier interviews with a reporter for the newspaper had caused him “torture for more than a year.” He demanded an apology and a large donation in his name to Tufts University, where he completed medical school. The Times declined both requests.
Dr. Bornstein had privately told several associates that he had been the target of a raid during which handwritten records and printed laboratory results were seized, but he had declined to answer questions publicly about the episode until this week.
He told NBC that he decided to speak out after seeing reports that Dr. Ronny L. Jackson, the president’s nominee to run the Department of Veterans Affairs, had been accused of doling out medications and behaving inappropriately while serving as the White House physician. Dr. Jackson withdrew from consideration for the post shortly afterward.
Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, said Tuesday that Dr. Jackson would return to the White House medical unit but not as Mr. Trump’s physician. She said Dr. Sean Conley, a Navy commander who has been the acting White House physician since Dr. Jackson’s nomination to the cabinet, would replace him.
“This is like a celebration for me,” Dr. Bornstein said.
Ms. Sanders dismissed Dr. Bornstein’s description of the visit by the three men as a raid. In a briefing with reporters, she said that the files had been removed by the White House medical unit as part of a standard transition procedure.
“The White House medical unit took possession of the president’s medical records,” Ms. Sanders said. Asked whether the visit was a raid carried out by Mr. Schiller, she replied, “That is not my understanding.” She did not address why Mr. Schiller, who was not a part of the unit, had been present.
Dr. Bornstein said that he was not given a standard release form conforming to Hipaa regulations to sign over Mr. Trump’s records before they were taken. But Ms. Sanders said that the White House medical unit supplied Dr. Bornstein with a letter requesting the records.
The Trump Organization, which at the time employed both Mr. Schiller and Mr. Garten, declined to comment.
In his initial interviews with The New York Times in 2017, Dr. Bornstein made no secret of the fact that he had wanted to be the White House physician.