(CNN) –Former President George Herbert Walker Bush will remain in a Houston, Texas, hospital over Christmas despite doctors' hopes last week he could be home by the holiday, his spokesman told CNN.
Bush has had a few setbacks in the last week, including a low-grade fever, which have been frustrating to him and his doctors.
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"But his doctors are cautiously optimistic" about a release in the not too distant future, spokesman Jim McGrath said.
Methodist Hospital has said doctors so far have not been able to set a date for his release.
"President Bush remains in stable condition in the hospital," hospital spokesman George Kovacik said in a statement Sunday.
"His doctors feel he should build up his energy before going home. They remain optimistic about his full recovery and are being extra cautious with his care. No discharge date has been set at this time."
Bush, who is 88, had originally been fighting bronchitis and an associated cough but in the last few weeks had been undergoing some physical therapy to help prepare him to go home.
The former president has been in the hospital for just over a month. He was first hospitalized from November 7 through 19, then readmitted on November 23.
Best wishes to a true American Patriot. Get well soon Mr. President!
Sorry to hear that, but he is exactly where he needs to be, and his family will be with him for sure.
Merry Christmas everybody!
Please let's not forget George H.W. Bush not only is a former President but he's also one of our 4 living former Presidents and we must all pray and wish him well. It's our History and our now living childrens History, 4 living former Presidents.
Best wishes for your recovery Mr. President. We are praying for you and your family. Merry Christmas everyone may God Bless you and your families. Thank you Claudia, Houston, Tx. for your sincere comments.
I'm a full on Democrat who voted for Clinton, but I'm hoping for the best for President Bush. I've always thought he is a good man, and I want him around for years to come. Get well, Mr. President.
Get well Mr. President! May your family and you have a Merry Christmas and a blessed and joyful New Year!
Mr president be blessed and hope with a speedy recovery. Merry christmas&and ahealthyand properous2013
Hope you are home in time for 01.01.13.
Ring in the new year at home H.W.
George Bush and his son to a degree knew more about governing than this current crop of republicans. I didn't vote for either but at least they knew in order to govern you had to make movement towards the middle. Well wishes to the Bush family and may God bless them.
my prayers goes our to the bush family and wishing the a merry christmas may god bless the bush family
Best wishes Mr. Bush. As a democrat I admired his leadership and consider him the "one good" Bush.
Get well soon merry christmas and god bless you and your family in the new year
God bless you Mr. President and your family. We wish you a speedy recovery.
Get well Mr. Bush Sr.
God bless you President Bush. Thank you for your service to our country both in WW2 and as president. We lived not far from you in Houston. You have always been a fine gentleman. Our best wishes and prayers for your recovery.
I'm praying for your quick recovery and your health. You truly were one of the last plain speaking gentleman in the White House. God bless you and your family.
One of the best Presidents in recent memory! Get well soon....wish you were well enough to be our President now...heaven knows we could use you in charge!
may god keep u and protect u an lift u up in health in his ever loving arms george.brenda a.
Merry Christmas to all. May God watch over Mr Bush and his family during his time of illness. As an american I respect all of our presidents leaders of the free world. I also pray for our current president and his family. This is a great nation God bless America.
God bless Mr. Bush