The White House was not informed at the time, and did not learn of Austin’s hospitalization until three days after he was first admitted. It took another week after that for Austin to disclose his cancer diagnosis — a full month after he was first diagnosed.
According to a statement provided by Austin’s doctors, the secretary progressed well throughout his stay and is expected to make a full recovery.
“Secretary Austin’s prostate cancer was treated early and effectively, and his prognosis is excellent. He has no planned further treatment for his cancer other than regular post-prostatectomy surveillance,” said the statement from trauma medical director Dr. John Maddox and Dr. Gregory Chesnut, director of the center for Prostate Disease Research at the Murtha Cancer Center.
Austin, who resumed his duties as Defense secretary on Jan. 5, is expected to continue working remotely for some time and eventually return full-time to the Pentagon.