Austin to resume duties Tuesday after 2nd hospitalization this year
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will resume his "normal duties" on Tuesday following his recent hospitalization for a bladder issue, the Pentagon announced Monday.
The latest: Austin underwent non-surgical procedures under anesthesia on Monday to address the bladder issue, officials with Walter Reed National Military Medical Center said Monday.
- Austin is expected to make a "successful recovery" and is not expected to have a long hospital stay, the statement added.
- "We anticipate the Secretary will be able to resume his normal duties tomorrow."
- The Defense Department said Monday Austin will not travel to Brussels later this week for meetings on NATO and Ukraine's defense against Russia's invasion.
Catch up quick: Officials with Walter Reed National Military Medical Center said on Sunday Austin is expected to make a full recovery after being admitted into a critical care unit for "symptoms suggesting an emergent bladder issue."
- "At this time, it is not clear how long Secretary Austin will remain hospitalized," the statement added. "His cancer prognosis remains excellent."
- The initial secrecy surrounding that two-week hospitalization was criticized by lawmakers from both parties, with some calling for him to resign. He's due to testify over the matter later this month.
State of play: Pentagon press secretary Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said in a statement Sunday that Austin was taken to the hospital around 2:20pm Sunday over the potential bladder issue and was at the time "retaining the functions and duties of his office."
- Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks and the chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff were notified and "White House and Congressional notifications have occurred," Ryder said.
- "Secretary Austin traveled to the hospital with the unclassified and classified communications systems necessary to perform his duties," he added.
- Austin transferred functions and duties to Hicks just before 5pm ET, per a later statement from Ryder.
Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.