Former first lady Barbara Bush in 'good spirits' in hospital

HOUSTON Thu Jan 2, 2014 5:12pm EST

Former U.S. first lady Barbara Bush listens to her son, President George W. Bush, as he speaks at an event on social security reform in Orlando, Florida, March 18, 2005. REUTERS/Jason Reed

Former U.S. first lady Barbara Bush listens to her son, President George W. Bush, as he speaks at an event on social security reform in Orlando, Florida, March 18, 2005.

Credit: Reuters/Jason Reed

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HOUSTON (Reuters) - Former first lady Barbara Bush was in good spirits and doing well after being admitted to a Houston hospital earlier this week with a respiratory ailment, a family spokesman said on Thursday.

"She's definitely keen to get home to her dogs and her husband, and not in that order," said Jim McGrath, a spokesman for former President George H.W. Bush.

Barbara Bush, 88, was being evaluated by doctors day-to-day, and no time has been set for her discharge, McGrath said.

Former President Bush took to social media and sent a message on behalf of his wife to President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton in appreciation of their concern.

"Barbara thanks @BarackObama & @billclinton for their get-well wishes and is heeding their advice. Doesn't happen w every President she knows!" he said on his Twitter feed.

The former first lady was admitted on Monday to Methodist Hospital in Houston's Texas Medical Center.

Obama sent his best wishes in a statement from Hawaii where he is vacationing with his family.

Barbara Bush is known to the American public as a no-nonsense wife and mother who said she was more interested in running a household than in helping her husband run the country.

After leaving the White House, she pursued her interest in promoting literacy and reading and also wrote her memoirs.

The former first lady is also the mother of George W. Bush, the 43rd U.S. president.

(Reporting by Andrea Lorenz; Writing by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Scott Malone and Leslie Adler)

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