The Gates Foundation said Tuesday it would commit $50 million to help fight the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, including $5 million for emergency operations and $5 million for supplies and educational material so people can learn how to protect themselves. "In addition, the foundation will work with public and private sector partners to accelerate the development of therapies, vaccines, and diagnostics that could be effective in treating patients and preventing further transmission of the disease,” the foundation said in a statement.
Separately, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) said it will send 1,000 hospital beds for direct patient care and $10 million to transport 100 health-care workers from other African countries to the affected region, bringing the total U.S. spending on the epidemic to more than $100 million. The World Health Organization says Ebola is expanding exponentially across Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, with 4,200 cases and nearly 2,100 deaths, half of them in the past three weeks alone. WHO says it will cost at least $600 million and take thousands of more people on the ground to even begin to slow the epidemic.
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