Jimmy Carter, oldest living former U.S. president ever, is placed in hospice care

Former President Carter smiling
Former President Carter teaching Sunday school at Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, Ga., in 2019.
(Associated Press)

Former President Carter has entered hospice care, having decided to avoid “additional medical intervention,” the Carter Center announced Saturday.

The 98-year-old former president made his decision after recent hospitalizations, according to the Carter Center, a nonprofit group set up to carry out charitable activities supported by the former president and former First Lady Rosalynn Carter.

“After a series of short hospital stays, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter today decided to spend his remaining time at home with his family and receive hospice care instead of additional medical intervention. He has the full support of his family and his medical team,” the center said in a statement.


“The Carter family asks for privacy during this time and is grateful for the concern shown by his many admirers,” the nonprofit said.

The statement did not say what Carter had been treated for during his recent stays in the hospital.

In 2015, Carter reported that he was being treated for melanoma after surgery to remove a mass from his liver. Months later, he reported that tests no longer showed any sign of the cancer.

In 2019, months after the death of former President George H.W. Bush at age 94, Carter became the longest-living former president in U.S. history.

Two years later, having spent much of the COVID-19 pandemic at their home in Plains, Ga., the Carters opted not to attend the presidential inauguration of President Biden. It was the first time they had missed such a ceremony since Carter left office, according to the Associated Press.

He was elected in 1976 and served a single four-year term. After losing reelection to Ronald Reagan in 1980, he threw himself into philanthropic activities.


In 1982, he and his wife founded the Carter Center, which has pressed for peaceful solutions to world conflicts, promoted human rights and worked to eradicate disease in poor nations.

In 2002, Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in brokering a peace agreement between Egypt and Israel while he was in office.

Even after his cancer, Carter remained active with Habitat for Humanity, the home-building charity he and his wife have been involved in for decades.