By Michael Muskal
11:38 AM EST, January 14, 2013
George H.W. Bush, the nation’s oldest former president, could be released this week from a Texas hospital after nearly two months of treatment, according to a family spokesman.
Bush, 88, could be released from Methodist Hospital in Houston, if doctors give him the final approval, spokesman Jim McGrath said in an email to reporters.
“We are hopeful that the president can be discharged this coming week, but we're still taking everything one day at a time,” McGrath said.
If Bush is released, it is unclear whether he will return to his Houston home or be sent to a rehabilitation facility. Those details will be released "at the appropriate time," the spokesman said. Bush and his wife, Barbara, spend winters in Texas and summers at the family’s home in Kennebunkport, Maine.
Bush, the father of former President George W. Bush and of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, has been hospitalized since Nov. 23 for an illness that began as a persistent cough related to bronchitis.
He had been in the hospital about a month when his office disclosed in December that the former president was moved into an intensive care unit because he had developed a fever that physicians were having trouble controlling.
On Dec. 29, Bush's office announced that he had improved and he was returned to a hospital room. Since then, he has continued to get better and has been undergoing physical therapy to rebuild his strength.
Bush was the nation's 41st president and served one term before losing to Bill Clinton.