Belfast Telegraph

Duke kept in hospital as a 'precautionary' measure

The Queen arrives at King’s Lynn railway station for the start of her traditional Christmas break at Sandringham
The Queen arrives at King’s Lynn railway station for the start of her traditional Christmas break at Sandringham
The Duke of Edinburgh is expected to spend the run-up to Christmas being cared for by medical staff, after he was admitted to hospital for treatment relating to a "pre-existing condition"

By Tony Jones

The Duke of Edinburgh is expected to spend the run-up to Christmas being cared for by medical staff, after he was admitted to hospital for treatment relating to a "pre-existing condition".

Philip's planned admission to a private central London hospital, which has been treating members of the royal family for decades, was described as a "precautionary measure" by Buckingham Palace.

The Queen did not change her schedule and left Buckingham Palace for Norfolk by train, to begin her traditional festive break at her private Sandringham estate, where the duke spends much of his time since retiring from public duties.

The duke, who turned 98 in June, has generally enjoyed good health, appearing to recover well from a planned hip replacement operation in April 2018.

Philip escaped with minor injuries after a dramatic car crash near Sandringham in January, but in the past decade has been admitted to hospital for abdominal surgery, bladder infections and a blocked coronary artery.

A Buckingham Palace statement said: "The Duke of Edinburgh travelled from Norfolk this morning to the King Edward VII Hospital in London for observation and treatment in relation to a pre-existing condition.

"The admission is a precautionary measure, on the advice of His Royal Highness's doctor."

The duke was not taken by ambulance and is expected to be in hospital for a few days.

Buckingham Palace would not go into details about Philip's pre-existing condition, or the nature of his treatment, but there is likely to be concern for the duke among well-wishers given his age.

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