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Government of Canada Announces Additional Support to Help Global Efforts to Fight Ebola in West Africa

Canada launches “Join The Fight Against Ebola” recruitment campaign, provides more funding to humanitarian organizations and announces deployment of Canadian Armed Forces members to West Africa

November 27, 2014
Ottawa, Ontario
Public Health Agency of Canada

The Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Health, along with the Honourable Robert Nicholson, Minister of National Defence, and Dr. Gregory Taylor, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, today announced further action and support to respond to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

Canada is addressing the need for medical assistance on the ground in West Africa by launching the “Join the Fight Against Ebola” campaign, which will promote the recruitment of Canadian healthcare workers through the Canadian Red Cross. Much needed healthcare workers will help manage existing Ebola Treatment Centres in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea, by providing care for patients and allowing facilities to expand the number of treatment beds available to patients. Recruitment efforts will focus on medical doctors and nurses, psychosocial support workers, water and sanitation engineers, and infection prevention and control workers.

Canada will also provide $20.9 million in new additional funding to ten humanitarian organizations working to address the increased humanitarian needs of people affected by the Ebola crisis. The funding will support treatment efforts, training activities and psychological support, as well as help communities and families cope with the outbreak. It will also help address urgent training needs for medical personnel and emergency experts who will be deployed to Ebola-affected countries.

In addition, up to 40 Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) health care and support staff will deploy to Sierra Leone for up to six months to support efforts on the ground in West Africa. Canadian military doctors, nurses, medics and support staff will work alongside their United Kingdom military counterparts operating at the Kerry Town Treatment Unit (KTTU) to treat local and international healthcare workers who have been exposed to the Ebola virus disease.

For more information on how healthcare workers can make a difference and apply to the Canadian Red Cross to join the fight against Ebola, visit

Quick Facts

  • According to the World Health Organization (WHO), as of November 23, 2014, there were 15,935 reported cases of Ebola and 5,689 reported deaths worldwide. 
  • Canada is a leader in fighting the Ebola virus disease and continues to contribute to the response to the outbreak in West Africa. With today’s announcement, the Government of Canada has committed a total of $113.5 million, to support health, humanitarian and security interventions to address the spread of Ebola, as well as offered in kind support and donations of the Canadian Ebola vaccine.
  • The “Join the Fight Against Ebola” recruitment campaign in partnership with the Canadian Red Cross, will target Canadian healthcare workers, including federal employees, with the relevant skills and experience, to help fill the demand for healthcare workers and specialists in existing Ebola treatment centres in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
  • The additional funding announced today will help the following ten organizations address humanitarian needs of those impacted by Ebola: the Canadian Red Cross Society (CRCS), French Red Cross Society (FRCS), Médecins sans Frontières (MSF), Action Contre la Faim (ACF), CANADEM, CARE Canada, Oxfam Québec, Plan Canada, Samaritan’s Purse, and Save the Children.
  • The CAF mission, Operation SIRONA, is expected to be operating in Sierra Leone by December 2014 and will last up to six months. Canadian military health care personnel will be rotated every two months during the deployment. CAF personnel will be trained at the state-of-the-art British Army Medical Services Training Centre in the United Kingdom.


“Canada is a world leader in the global efforts to fight Ebola in West Africa. Canada is committed to encouraging and supporting the Canadian healthcare workers who courageously put their lives on the line to save others, and we are honoured to work with the Canadian Red Cross to help even more healthcare workers join the fight against Ebola.”
The Honourable Rona Ambrose,
Minister of Health

“We recognize and respect the absolute crucial role that humanitarian organizations are playing in responding to the Ebola outbreak. We are sincerely grateful for their work, dedication, and sacrifice. By working with our partners, Canada is continuing to show its leadership in the international efforts to save lives and stop the spread of Ebola.”
The Honourable Christian Paradis,
Minister of International Development and La Francophonie

“Our Government is supporting the global effort to prevent the spread of Ebola by deploying Canadian Armed Forces medical experts to West Africa. Our uniformed health professionals and support staff will be highly trained and well-supported as they join their British military medical counterparts for this important international mission.”
Honourable Rob Nicholson,
Minister of National Defence

“Canada boasts some of the most skilled, experienced and courageous healthcare professionals in the world. We are grateful for their dedication and sacrifice and are calling on them to join the fight to stem the spread of the virus. Their efforts on the frontline are critical to bringing an end to the Ebola outbreak.”
Dr. Gregory Taylor
Chief Public Health Officer of Canada

“Since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak in March 2014, recruiting doctors, nurses and support staff has been our greatest challenge. We’ve sent 20 Canadian Red Cross personnel to date and are currently interviewing others for deployment soon but will need many more over the coming weeks and months, so this additional support from the Government of Canada is welcome news and very much appreciated.”
Mr. Conrad Sauvé
Secretary General and CEO
Canadian Red Cross

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Michael Bolkenius
Office of the Honourable Rona Ambrose
Federal Minister of Health
(613) 957-0200

Media Relations
Public Health Agency of Canada
(613) 957-2983