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George H.W. Bush could leave hospital before Christmas

Former US President George H.W. Bush on January 24, 2010 in New Orleans.

Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

Former US President George H.W. Bush on January 24, 2010 in New Orleans.

HOUSTON — Former president George H.W. Bush can look forward to spending the holidays at home after nearly three weeks in a Houston hospital with a bronchitis-related cough.

Methodist Hospital spokesman George Kovacik said Thursday that Bush has steadily improved and remains stable as he battles the lingering effects of bronchitis. Kovacik says Bush’s treatment now centers on physical therapy to increase his strength.

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The spokesman said doctors expect the 88-year-old to be able to celebrate Christmas at home with his family but no discharge date has been set.

Bush has been in the hospital since Nov. 23. He also was in the hospital for the same cough-related illness for about a week in early November.

Bush and his wife, Barbara, have homes in Houston and Kennebunkport, Maine.

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