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WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) airlifted more than 16 tons of medical supplies and emergency equipment to Monrovia, Liberia on August 24 as part of its ongoing efforts to combat the West Africa Ebola outbreak. The shipment came from USAID’s warehouse in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and included 10,000 sets of personal protective equipment (PPE), two water treatment systems, two portable water tanks capable of storing 10,000 liters each, and 100 rolls of plastic sheeting, which can be used in the construction of Ebola treatment centers. The critical commodities will be distributed to affected areas throughout Liberia.
“We know that healthcare workers in Liberia and other affected countries are working at great personal risk to prevent, identify, and treat Ebola,” said Jeremy Konyndyk, Director of USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance. “The U.S. is committed to working with the Liberian government, in close coordination with our international partners, to ensure that those working on the front line of this crisis get the medical supplies, training, and support needed to safely do their jobs.”
USAID, the State Department, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Department of Defense (DOD) are assisting those countries and international organizations responding to the outbreak. Activities include the provision of health equipment and other emergency supplies, support for public health messaging and technical expertise.
In support of the affected countries, the United States has been engaged in fighting the West Africa Ebola outbreak since cases were first reported, and we have expanded our efforts and increased personnel in the region over the last several weeks in response to its growing severity. The U.S. Government is working on an urgent basis with the World Health Organization, the governments of the affected countries, and other partners like the UK, France, Germany, and Canada, to determine the greatest need and to deploy the most needed resources. We are also working closely with organizations such as the International Federation of the Red Cross, UNICEF, Doctors Without Borders, and others to step up efforts on the ground to contain the Ebola outbreak.
Konyndyk arrived in Monrovia on August 24 with Dr. Tom Frieden, Director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), to see the impact of the Ebola outbreak first-hand, assess response activities, and discuss disease prevention and treatment strategies with Liberian officials. USAID deployed a multi-agency Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) on August 5 to coordinate the U.S. Government’s response efforts in West Africa. Since the outbreak was first reported in March 2014, USAID has committed more than $14.5 million to support the Ebola response.