THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
October 22, 2014
FACT SHEET: The U.S. Government’s Response to Ebola at Home and Abroad
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Ongoing U.S.-Led International Response to Stop Ebola in West Africa
Just as we fortify our domestic health infrastructure, the Administration has led an international coalition to stamp the virus out at its source in West Africa. The response leverages a civilian-led whole-of-government effort that calls upon the unique capabilities of the U.S. military to help bring the epidemic under control. We have been at this since March, when the first cases were reported, and we have scaled up that effort since:
• Deployment of key medical and expert personnel: The United States has deployed to West Africa more than 170 civilian medical, healthcare, and disaster response experts from multiple U.S. government departments and agencies, some of whom are part of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Disaster Assistance Response Team.
• Scaling-up the DoD presence: DoD announced the planned deployment of 3,200 troops, including 1,100 in the next two weeks. More than 600 U.S. military personnel are now in the region, and the total troop commitment will depend on the requirements on the ground. Personnel from the U.S. Naval Medical Research Center continue to operate three mobile medical labs, which provide 24-hour turnaround results on samples.
• U.S. financial support: The United States has obligated more than $300 million toward fighting the outbreak in West Africa and announced its intentions to devote more than $1 billion to the whole-of-government Ebola response effort, by far the largest investment by any donor.
• International financial support: This financial commitment had helped us galvanize support from international partners. Since the President’s speech at the CDC in mid-September, countries and international organizations have pledged more than $800 million to the effort, while also committing significant contributions of personnel, aircraft, and resources on the ground.
• New hospital for infected workers: DOD is finishing construction of a hospital for infected medical workers, which by the end of October will be operational and staffed by U.S. Public Health Service officers.
• Progress on Ebola Treatment Units: The U.S. military is overseeing the construction of up to 17 100-bed Ebola Treatment Units (ETUs) in Liberia. The construction of three ETUs is underway, and they will be completed in November. The U.S. government also supports the construction of several ETUs by international NGOs in Liberia.
• Community Outreach and Safe Burials: U.S. support helps to inform, educate and better equip communities to protect themselves and their loved ones against Ebola. Additional U.S. support has helped Liberia increase to 65 the number of safe burial teams working across every county to safely and respectfully dispose of bodies, largely reducing a primary vehicle of transmission of the disease.