Less than two weeks after King Charles III’s admission to a London hospital for treatment of an enlarged prostate, Buckingham Palace revealed that further tests had uncovered “a form of cancer.” With doctors advising the king to defer public duties, attention turned to potential adjustments within the royal family. Many anticipated a redistribution of responsibilities among other members, particularly Charles’s sons, William and Harry.
As Charles temporarily steps back from his public duties, other senior royals like Queen Camilla, Princess Anne, and Sophie, the Duchess of Edinburgh, are anticipated to absorb some of his commitments. However, a significant portion of Charles’s responsibilities is expected to fall upon his son William, the Prince of Wales and heir to the throne. William, who recently scaled back his public engagements due to his wife Catherine’s hospitalization, is likely to see an increase in his workload during this period.
With William poised to take on additional tasks from his father’s schedule, questions arise about the potential involvement of Prince Harry. Since stepping back from their roles as senior royals in 2020, Harry and his wife Meghan have predominantly resided in California. Despite Charles’s health concerns, it’s unlikely that Harry’s return to Britain will be substantial given the strained relationships within the family.
Although Harry did meet with the king on Tuesday, the duration of his visit remains uncertain. Speculation abounds regarding the impact of Charles’s health on his relationship with Harry. While some argue for reconciliation, health crises aren’t a cure-all for familial discord.
The seriousness of Charles’s condition remains undisclosed by Buckingham Palace, but the revelation of a cancer diagnosis, following on the heels of a previously described “benign” prostate issue, suggests a heightened level of concern. The palace’s decision to release information on the king’s health represents a departure from the royal family’s tradition of maintaining privacy regarding medical matters, underscoring the significance of the situation.