ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - Premier Danny Williams is recovering from heart surgery performed today in the United States.
Deputy premier Kathy Dunderdale says surgery on the premier of Newfoundland and Labrador went well.
Dunderdale says he will remain in intensive care for the next 24 hours but should be back to work in early March.
It's not known what type of procedure the 60-year-old Williams underwent or where the surgery was done.
The premier's decision to go to the U.S. to seek health care has been at the centre of a debate this week about public and private medicine in Canada.
It has also spilled into the ongoing debate in the United States over that country's health care system.
Dunderdale said it was unfair that Williams became the "poster child" for those debates.
"We forego a lot of privacy when we put our hands up to do this job, but there still are parameters," she said.
"I believe it goes beyond the pale. The premier hasn't done anything that anybody else wouldn't have done."
She said Williams was able to have his "preferred" method of surgery, but she declined to reveal what that was.
"This is a stressful time. Any kind of heart surgery brings with it a great deal of angst," she said.
She said Williams will be "chafing at the bit" to return to work.
"Nobody has to encourage him to work. He's a workaholic."