A hundred additional U.S. soldiers arrived in Liberia early Tuesday, bringing the number of American troops combating Ebola in West Africa up to 565, according to the Department of Defense. Three mobile labs for Ebola testing and treatment are functional in West Africa, and personnel has tested more than 1,000 suspected Ebola samples, according to the Defense Department. The three technicians manning each lab will be the only troops to have direct contact with Ebola samples, military leaders said Tuesday.
Eventually, up to 4,000 military personnel are expected to be deployed to West African countries battling the Ebola outbreak, and four more labs will be set up. Other soldiers will help build medical centers and give training to local health-care workers, but torrential rains have delayed the construction of many of the centers. The task of developing 17 100-bed treatment centers is expected to last well into November, according to the Pentagon. The operation will cost an estimated $750 million throughout the first six months, U.S. Army Gen. David Rodriguez, the commander of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), said Tuesday. Nearly 4,500 people have died of Ebola since the outbreak began in March, according to the World Health Organization.
- Ebola Could Spike to 10,000 New Cases a Week Without Action, WHO Says
- U.S. Troops Fighting Ebola in Africa Will Be Safe: Pentagon
- U.S. Military Breaks Ground for Ebola Hospital
— Jim Miklaszewski and Courtney Kube