Pentagon Sending 600 More Military Personnel to Fight Ebola in Africa

Liberian Red Cross staff look for bodies in Monrovia on October 3, 2014, where the Ebola virus has crippled the country's already weak health services.PASCAL GUYOT / AFP - Getty Images

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The Pentagon is now preparing to send up to 3,600 U.S. military personnel into West Africa to aid in the fight against the Ebola outbreak — 600 more than the original plan for 3,000, military officials said Friday.

There was already an advance team of about 230 US military in Liberia to lay the groundwork for the overall effort.

A 25-bed hospital, intended to treat medical personnel who have contracted Ebola is expected to be up and running in Liberia by mid-October. Three medical labs will also be constructed.

In addition 17 100-bed treatment facilities will be built in Liberia and throughout six West African countries, as needed, within the coming weeks, officials said.

The U.S. military will eventually provide medical personnel to "train" health care workers but as of now there are no plans for American military medical personnel to provide direct care to Ebola patients, officials said.

Officials said there were discussions to send even more military personnel, meaning as many as 4000 would be going, but nothing had been finalized.


— Jim Miklaszewski