PM Undergoes Eyelid Operation Without Notifying Cabinet, Press

Prime Minister not required to transfer authorities or tell ministers of operation unless undergoing general anaesthesia.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert underwent a blepharoplasty (eyelid 'lift') on Friday, shortly after returning from China. The prime minister did not inform ministers or the press about the operation until after the fact.

Aides said the procedure took place in a private medical clinic under local anesthesia and lasted about 40 minutes.

Olmert returned to work as usual Sunday morning, and mentioned the procedure at the weekly cabinet meeting. Olmert did not inform the cabinet about the operation in advance and did not tell the press pool that accompanied him to China about it.

Because the procedure did not entail general anesthesia, there was no need to transfer the prime minister's authority to his deputy, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni.

One year after the hospitalization of Olmert's predecessor, Ariel Sharon, there is still no procedure in place for monitoring and reporting on the health of the prime minister.

The prime minister is not obligated to tell anyone about illnesses or medical treatments and no one is responsible either for making sure he receives the appropriate care, or for informing the public about his condition.