Is the Pandemic Impacting Prince Harry’s Ability to Visit Prince Philip In the Hospital?

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle made the decision to remove themselves from the royal family and move to the United States last year. Since then, the pandemic has hindered the couple’s plans for starting their own projects, and it’s also prevented them from returning to the U.K.

Now, though, Prince Philip is sick in a London hospital — and Prince Harry is more than 5,000 miles away in Montecito, California. Will Harry be able to visit his grandfather?

Prince Harry and Prince Philip at the Rugby World Cup Final match in 2015
Prince Harry and Prince Philip in 2015 | Phil Walter/Getty Images

Prince Philip was admitted to a London hospital on Feb. 17

99-year-old Prince Philip has been a member of the royal family since he and Queen Elizabeth tied the knot way back in 1947 — before she even became queen. Philip, who is originally from Greece, has been an important royal family member and someone who has built a legacy over more than 60 years as an official working royal (though he technically retired from public engagements several years ago).

On Feb. 17, Prince Philip was admitted to King Edward VII Hospital in London after falling ill, though the royal family has said that there was no emergency involved and that Philip went on his own accord. “The Duke’s admission is a precautionary measure, on the advice of His Royal Highness’s Doctor, after feeling unwell,” the palace said in a statement.

Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth
Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth | Oli Scarff/Getty Images

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Prince Harry would have to jump through hoops to see his grandfather

With Prince Philip in the hospital, people are certainly thinking the worst. Approaching his 100th birthday, the prince isn’t quite the spring chicken he once was. But how worried is Prince Harry? Philip’s grandson moved more than 5,000 miles away to California about a year ago, and he hasn’t visited the royal family since, though the pandemic has likely been a factor.

Should Harry want to visit his grandfather in the hospital, it might not be so easy. The U.K. has been on a serious lockdown since last year, and they have major travel restrictions for anyone coming into the country. According to Forbes, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has implemented rules to prevent the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19). Travelers are required to spend 10 days in isolation. Travelers must also complete a passenger locator form, which informs the U.K. where the person plans to stay and for how long. Plus, should Harry return to the U.K., he technically wouldn’t be allowed to visit Philip in the hospital.

It’s possible the pandemic is hindering Harry’s ability to visit his grandfather. Since he’s technically no longer royalty, he’d be subject to the same treatment as every other commoner, though it’s possible the queen could pull some strings.

Kate Middleton, Prince Philip, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry
Kate Middleton, Prince Philip, Meghan Markle, and Prince Harry | Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images

Prince Harry’s return to the U.S. wouldn’t be easy, either

The United States has certain travel requirements as well, and Harry’s return might mean he’d have to spend some time away from his pregnant wife, Meghan Markle, and son Archie. There is a mandatory quarantine period in California, and the CDC requires that all travelers coming into the U.S. test negative within three days before traveling from the U.K.

It remains unclear if Harry will travel to the U.K. to see Prince Philip; it depends on how quickly Philip recovers or whether his condition worsens. Still, with Harry being so far away, he wouldn’t have much time to get there should his grandfather take a turn for the worse. It’s possible the royals already have a plan in place, should the worst happen.