OAN Roy Francis
UPDATED 8:34 AM – Thursday, March 30, 2023
According to the Vatican, Pope Francis will be hospitalized for “a few days” for treatment of a respiratory infection.
Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni released a statement saying that the Pope was admitted to Policlinico A. Gemelli, the hospital where popes are usually treated.
“In recent days Pope Francis complained of some respiratory difficulties and this afternoon he went to Policlinico A. Gemelli for some medical checks,” the statement said. “The outcome of these [tests] showed a respiratory infection (excluding Covid-19 infection) that will require a few days of appropriate hospital medical therapy. Pope Francis is touched by the many messages received and expresses his gratitude for the closeness and prayer.”
The Pope was taken to the hospital after his weekly general audience in St. Peter’s Square, however, the Vatican had stated that the visit was previously planned.
Bruni had said that the Pope was at the hospital “since this afternoon for some previously scheduled tests,” and that his schedule for the rest for the rest of the day had been cleared “to make space for the continuation of tests.”
The Pope had suffered from severe pneumonia as a young man, and had part of a lung removed, he has also had a recent history of medical issues. Francis has often been seen with a walking stick, or utilizing a wheelchair to move around, due to the pain in his right knee.
In 2021, the Pope had surgery to remove part of his colon due to him suffering from diverticulitis, which is a condition which can cause the inflammation and infection of the colon.
In December, Francis announced that he had already signed his resignation letter in case he becomes too “impaired” to perform his duties. He said that he had written the letter years beforehand and gave it to the then-Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone.
“I have already signed my renunciation. The Secretary of State at the time was Tarcisio Bertone. I signed it and said: ‘If I should become impaired for medical reasons or whatever, here is my renunciation,’” the Pope had told Spanish news outlet ABC.
According to Bruni, the Pope “rested well” his first night at the hospital and that “the clinical picture is progressively improving.”
A further update on his condition is expected to be released by the Vatican sometime on Thursday.
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