On Tuesday, President Obama is announcing the deployment of up to 3,000 military personnel to Africa. The enemy this time is Ebola, specifically the West African outbreak that has killed at least 2,200 people so far. The U.S. military will initially provide logistical and medical support to Liberia, which is struggling to cope with, much less stop, the exponential spread of the deadly virus.
The U.S. military has already committed to building a 25-bed portable hospital in Liberia, but Obama is expected to announce the construction of 17 Ebola treatment centers in the region, with some 1,700 treatment beds. Along with building facilities to quarantine and treat Ebola patients, the U.S. military will train up to 500 local health workers a week to handle the disease and the crisis.
The White House plan also includes sending additional doctors and experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other agencies, tens of thousands of Ebola tests, and 400,000 kits to treat Ebola in-home. The U.S. has spent more than $100 million responding to West Africa's Ebola outbreak so far.