Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush remains hospitalized

Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:38pm IST

Former President George H.W. Bush smiles as he listens to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speak as he met with Bush to pick up his formal endorsement in Houston March 29, 2012. REUTERS/Donna Carson/Files

Former President George H.W. Bush smiles as he listens to Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speak as he met with Bush to pick up his formal endorsement in Houston March 29, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Donna Carson/Files

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REUTERS - Former President George H.W. Bush, who has been hospitalized for a month undergoing treatment for bronchitis, may not be released from a Houston hospital in time to celebrate Christmas at home as doctors had hoped.

Bush, 88, remained in stable condition and doctors were optimistic he would make a full recovery, George Kovacik, a spokesman at Methodist Hospital, said in an emailed statement on Sunday.

But doctors were being "extra cautious" with his care and no discharge date had been set, the statement said. Earlier this month, Kovacik said doctors expected Bush would be able to spend Christmas at home with his family.

"His doctors feel he should build up his energy before going home," the statement said.

Bush, the 41st president and a Republican, took office in 1989 and served one term in the White House. The father of former President George W. Bush, he also is a former congressman, U.N. ambassador, CIA director and vice president for two terms under Ronald Reagan.

(Reporting by Kevin Gray; Editing by Daniel Trotta and Vicki Allen)

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