Buckingham Palace has released a somewhat concerning update regarding the health of the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, who is the husband of Queen Elizabeth II. The 99-year-old royal was admitted to a private hospital — the King Edward VII Hospital in London — on Feb. 16, 2021, after “feeling unwell for a few days,” according to BBC, but has since been moved to another location.
The palace confirmed that the Duke’s original hospital stay was only as “a precautionary measure,” though it’s not thought his health issues are related to the coronavirus after BBC confirmed both he and the Queen received their vaccinations in January 2021.
Prince Philip was expected to remain there just “for a few days” so that he could be observed by medical professionals and get some rest, though the March 1, 2021 update from the palace has caused some concern for the senior royal after it was confirmed he is not expected to head home for at least a few more days.
Why Prince Philip is still hospitalized
It was confirmed by Buckingham Palace, via The Telegraph, that Prince Philip was transferred to another London hospital on the morning of March 1, 2021, after almost two weeks at King Edward VII Hospital. The Duke was taken to St Bartholomew’s Hospital, which is not private, by ambulance and is set to undergo tests for a pre-existing heart condition, while also being treated for “an infection.”
The palace’s statement added that Prince Harry and Prince William’s grandfather — who is set to celebrate his 100th birthday in June 2021 — “remains comfortable and is responding to treatment but is expected to remain in hospital until at least the end of the week.” The prince was not photographed while he transferred hospitals, as he was shielded from awaiting paparazzi by large umbrellas. It’s thought that the palace only confirmed he had moved after his arrival at St Bartholomew’s.
Social media was flooded with messages from fans concerned about Prince Philip’s health. “Prince Philip going into hospital isn’t worrying, it’s just a precaution, Prince Philip being transferred from a private hospital to an NHS one is worrying. Clearly his condition has deteriorated enough to warrant expert medical care,” one person wrote on Twitter. “This isn’t sounding good. I wish him well,” another tweeted.
What is Prince Philip's pre-existing condition?
Although Buckingham Palace didn’t confirm the exact nature of Prince Philip’s pre-existing condition in the update issued on March 1, 2021, in 2011 he suffered from chest pains and was treated for a blocked coronary artery at Papworth Hospital in Cambridgeshire. Per BBC, Buckingham Palace described it as a “minimally invasive procedure of coronary stenting” and confirmed that the then 90-year-old royal had a “good night” at the hospital.
The procedure saw doctors insert a balloon into the artery, which they then blew up in order to dissipate the blockage. The balloon contained a metal sleeve known as a stent, which remained inside the Duke’s artery after the balloon was removed.
Prince Philip has had a number of hospital stints during his almost 100 years. As reported by The Telegraph, he was also admitted to King Edward VII’s Hospital on Dec. 20, 2019, again to treat a “pre-existing condition.” He stayed for four nights, with the palace describing it as a “precautionary measure.” We hope this move simply marks the next stop on Prince Philip’s path to recovery.
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