HOUSTON — Former President George H.W. Bush remained Monday in a Houston hospital, where he is being treated for a painful, lingering bronchitis-related cough, and there is no timeline for his release, his spokesman said.
Initially, aides had said the 88-year-old 41st president would be released from the hospital over the weekend. But he has a "nagging cough" and "we don't have any idea when he'll be released," said Methodist Hospital spokesman George Kovacik.
"They're not in any hurry, so they're just keeping him here, but there's really no change in his condition," Kovacik said. "He's stable and he's still here."
Bush has been in and out of the hospital for treatment of the cough since last month. The former president also has a form of Parkinson's disease that forces him to use a wheelchair or motorized scooter.
The ex-president and his wife, Barbara, live in Houston during the winter, and spend their summers in a home in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Bush's condition has improved in recent days, his spokesman in Houston, Jim McGrath, said, and he has been receiving visitors. While he has not been diagnosed with pneumonia, which can be dangerous in elderly people, and the cough is not life-threatening, the doctors and Bush himself prefer to wait until the cough goes away before sending him home.
"I was with him yesterday. He had a great day yesterday. He had a good night's sleep the night before, importantly, and his breathing was so much better. But he still has this cough, and when he coughs, it hurts," McGrath said. "The doctors don't really want to let him go until he's 100 percent."
Bush's wife, Barbara, has been by his side nearly nonstop, McGrath said. Previously, ex-President George W. Bush visited.