US President Barack Obama has unveiled plans to send 3,000 troops to Liberia to help fight the Ebola virus, White House sources say. Officials say personnel from the American military will be deployed to offer support with several aspects of tackling the pandemic including overseeing the building of new treatment centers and helping train medical staff.
The troops are expected to train up to 500 healthcare workers a week, construct 17 heathcare facilities equipped with 100 beds each and establish a joint command based in Monrovia, Liberia, to co-ordinate between US and international relief efforts.
They will also be tasked with distributing home healthcare kits to thousands of households and conducting a home and community-based campaign to train the people in how to handle patients.
The major focus for the mission will be to cover the epicenter of the outbreak; Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea from the base in Monrovia. More than 2,400 people have died from the virus in these countries since its outbreak described by health experts as the worst in human history.
More than half of those killed by the virus have been in Liberia.
President Obama’s plan to fight Ebola has been welcomed by many health experts.
United Nations officials are expected to discuss an international response to the outbreak at a meeting in Geneva.