‘I’m still alive’, quips Pope Francis as he leaves hospital

‘I’m still alive’, quips Pope Francis as he leaves hospital
Pope Francis autographs the plaster cast of a child as he leaves the Agostino Gemelli University Hospital in Rome, Saturday, April 1, 2023 after receiving treatment for a bronchitis, The Vatican said. Francis was hospitalized on Wednesday after his public general audience in St. Peter’s Square at The Vatican. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

Pope Francis has been discharged from hospital after being treated for bronchitis, quipping to journalists before being driven away: “I’m still alive.”

Francis, 86, was admitted to the Gemelli Polyclinic in Rome on Wednesday after reportedly having breathing difficulties following his weekly public audience.

The pontiff was treated with antibiotics administered intravenously, the Vatican said.

The Vatican said that before departing, Francis hugged a couple whose daughter had died on Friday night at the hospital.

Pope Francis consoles Serena Subania and Matteo Rugghia (Gregorio Borgia/AP)

Francis sat in the front seat of a white Fiat 500 car that drove him away from Gemelli Polyclinic.

On the eve of his discharge, Vatican officials said Francis would be St Peter’s Square for Palm Sunday Mass to mark the start of Holy Week, which culminates on Easter Sunday, April 9.

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