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Update, 6:35 p.m.: Bush is now in the intensive care unit as his Houston hospital, where he has been since Sunday, per a family spokesperson, reports the AP. "Doctors at Methodist continue to be cautiously optimistic about the current course of treatment," reads the latest of several differing statements over the last 24 hours. "The President is alert and conversing with medical staff, and is surrounded by his family."

Original post: Just as it seemed he was doing a little better, former President George H.W. Bush's health has taken a bit of a turn for the worse, his spokesman now says. The AP reports the fever that kept Bush Sr. in a hospital over Christmas has forced doctors to put him on a liquid-only diet for reasons they won't disclose. A discharge date hasn't been released, either.

It's always concerning when an 88-year-old man spends any length of time in the hospital, and Bush Sr. has been recovering from a number of things since the middle of November. "President Bush has had a series of setbacks which, combined with his age, have complicated the timeline for his release," Bush spokesman Jim McGrath said on Christmas Day. Today McGrath tells the AP that the fever "actually gone up in the last day or two."

There is some good news, though. The bronchitis that originally caused Bush Sr. to (secretly) check into the hospital back in the end of November is all but gone. He's coughing rarely now. 

In other recovering former leader news, Nelson Mandela was recently released from a South African hospital. The 94-year-old is now receiving treatment at home. 

Hopefully both men will be back to full health soon. 

Update: The AP is now reporting Bush has been in the intensive care unit, which means he's really sick, since Sunday. We're still hoping Bush will be okay, but intensive care is never a good thing. Thoughts and prayers to the Bush family. 

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