Gates Foundation Commits $50M to Fight Ebola Outbreak

Posted by on September 17, 2014 in Africa, Entrepreneurship, Health

14440817981_eb676a8850_n(3BL Media/Justmeans) – According the World Health Organization (WHO), global health security faces an ongoing danger from emerging and re-emerging epidemic diseases. WHO calls for the reduction of the devastation resulting from epidemics through key imperatives, including prevention, preparedness, response and recovery activities. The current Ebola outbreak in Africa is the worst in the history of the virus, and emergency response needs to be stepped up to prevent it from becoming a global crisis.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has announced a commitment of $50 million to support emergency efforts to contain the threat caused by the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. UN agencies and other international organizations engaged in Ebola response will immediately receive flexible funds from the Gates Foundation. These funds will enable the organizations as well as local governments to purchase critically needed supplies and scale up emergency operations in the affected regions.

The foundation has also said that it will mobilize public and private sector partners to step up the development of vaccines, therapies, and diagnostics that could treat patients effectively as well as prevent further spreading of the virus. Sue Desmond-Hellmann, CEO of the foundation, said that they are working urgently with their partners to determine the most effective ways to help the victims and stop the transmission of this deadly virus.

$10 million of the announced $50 million has already been committed to fight the Ebola outbreak. This includes $5 million to the WHO for emergency operations and R&D efforts, and $5 million to the U.S. Fund for UNICEF to support efforts in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. An additional $2 million will also be committed immediately to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to support incident management and strengthening the healthcare system.

As additional grants are disbursed, the foundation will release further information on its funding commitments to ground operations and to research and development for Ebola vaccines, drugs and diagnostics.

Source: Gates Foundation

Image Credit: Flickr via NIAID

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