Former US President Jimmy Carter will begin receiving hospice care, according to a statement from The Carter Center on Saturday.
“After a series of short hospital stays, former US 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 statement said.
Carter, who turned 98 last year, became the oldest living US president in history after the passing of George H.W. Bush, who died in late 2018 at 94. The nation’s 39th president has kept a low public profile in recent years due to the coronavirus pandemic but has continued to speak out about risks to democracy around the world, a longtime cause of his.
Carter beat brain cancer in 2015 but faced a series of health scares in 2019, and consequentially underwent surgery to remove pressure on his brain. His health woes forced him to give up his decadeslong tradition of teaching Sunday school at Maranatha Baptist Church in his hometown of Plains, Georgia.
A peanut farmer and US Navy lieutenant before going into politics, Carter, a Democrat, eventually serving one term as governor of Georgia and president of the United States from 1977 to 1981.
The former president is widely revered for his championing of human rights. His brokering of the Camp David Accords in 1978 with Egyptian President Anwar Sadat and Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin remains central to his legacy.
In his post-presidency years, Carter founded The Carter Center along with his wife, Rosalynn, in hopes of advancing world peace and health. The center has worked to advance democracy by monitoring foreign elections and reducing diseases in developing countries over the years.
Carter himself has been a longtime volunteer with Habitat for Humanity.
He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002 for his efforts to push for peace across the globe.
This story has been updated with additional information.