Colombian President Alvaro Uribe has the swine flu and officials have advised other South American leaders who met with him at a summit of the infection, authorities said Sunday.
The 57-year-old Uribe began feeling symptoms Friday, the same day as a meeting of South American presidents in Bariloche, Argentina, and he was confirmed to have swine flu after returning home, Social Protection Minister Diego Palacio said.
"This isn't something that has us scared," Palacio said at a news conference. Uribe, a key U.S. ally in Latin America, is not considered a high-risk patient and will continue working from his computer, officials said.
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who attended the summit, said he felt fine and had been tested for swine flu after returning from another UNASUR summit in Ecuador earlier in August. He said he didn't see any need to be tested again.
On Aug. 11, Costa Rican President Oscar Arias announced he had swine flu and was being quarantined at his home. The 69-year-old leader, who won the 1987 Nobel Peace Prize for his work in ending Central America's civil wars, has recovered.
Colombia's presidential office released a brief statement Sunday saying the country's National Health Institute confirmed that Uribe had swine flu. It said his case was "developing satisfactorily," The Associated Press reports.
According to AHN, people who were in close contact with Uribe were warned to take appropriate measures. He reportedly began exhibiting symptoms of the illness on Friday and became sick on Saturday. However, officials say he would have contracted the illness several days before he began exhibiting symptoms.