George H.W. Bush

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UPDATE: A spokesman for former President George W. Bush confirmed that he was discharged from the hospital Jan. 30 after being treated for pneumonia.

"He deeply appreciates everyone's prayers and good wishes," rep Jim McGrath said. Former first lady Barbara Bush went home from the hospital a week ago after being admitted with a cough and fatigue. 

UPDATE: Former President George H.W. Bush's spokesman, Jim McGrath, released the following statement via Twitter midday Wednesday: "Shortly after our previous report on President Bush's condition, he was admitted to the ICU at Houston Methodist Hospital to address and acute respiratory problem stemming from pneumonia. Doctors performed a procedure to protect and clear his airway that required sedation. President Bush is stable and resting comfortably in the ICU, where he will remain for observation. Additionally, [Barbara Bush] was admitted to the Houston Methodist Hospital this morning as a precaution after experiencing fatigue and coughing. We will provide additional updates as events warrant."


Former President George H.W. Bush has been hospitalized as a precaution after experiencing "shortness of breath," his office confirmed to NBC News Wednesday. Additionally, Today reported Bush, 92, is responding well to treatment and doctors are pleased with his progress. Overnight, chief of staff Jean Becker told NBC News he is in "stable condition" and "doing fine."

The Houston Chronical initially quoted Becker as saying the 41st President of the United States was expected to return home from Houston Methodist Hospital in a few days. "He's there," Becker told the newspaper Wednesday. "He's fine and he's doing really well." The politician's office later confirmed that he is "being monitored as a precaution and is resting comfortably."

Bush, who served as commander-in-chief from 1989 to 1993, has a form of Parkinson's disease; he uses a motorized scooter or a wheelchair to get around. This marks the fourth time in five years that Bush—the nation's oldest living president—has been hospitalized.

In July 2015, Bush was treated after falling at his summer home and breaking a bone in his neck. In December 2014, he was hospitalized in Houston due to "shortness of breath." And in 2012, Bush spent Christmas in intensive care for a bronchitis-related cough and other issues.

The former president's public appearances have become increasingly rare as of late. Bush's most recent outing was 11 days ago, when his family attended a Houston Texans playoff game.

Bush's office said earlier this month that he and his wife, Barbara Bush, 91, will not attend Donald Trump's inauguration on Jan. 20 due to their advanced ages, as well as "all that entails." Similarly, they were unable to attend President Barack Obama's inauguration in January 2013.

"So, yeah, my grandpa's in the hospital, which is never good news to hear or wake up to. I adore him. He's the best," Jenna Bush Hagar said on Today before showing her co-hosts a selfie she'd previously taken. "He likes selfies—or, we like to take selfies with him. It's not that great."

"He really is one of the most humble, wonderful men in the world, and I said to [my husband Henry Hagar] this morning, 'Oh gosh, bad news.' He said, 'Well, he's so strong,' and he is. I adore him," she said. "How lucky for our whole family that we have people that think about us."

Bush Hagar ended the segment by sending him her prayers. "We love you, Gamps!" she said, calling Bush by his nickname. "Probably not watching, but if you are, may we make you laugh."

(E! and NBC News are both members of the NBCUniversal family.)

(Originally published on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017, at 4:50 a.m. PDT.)

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