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Bill Gates, Paul Allen pledge millions to fight Ebola

Bill Gates, Paul Allen pledge millions to fight Ebola

Sep 15, 2014

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced last week that it was donating $50 million toward fighting the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, marking the largest donation to a humanitarian cause from the foundation, according to the Associated Press.

“By fighting Ebola now, we can make sure it doesn’t become an epidemic in [West] Africa,” Gates posted on Twitter. The Foundation previously donated $10 million toward fighting the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. The virus has killed more than 2,000 people across Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Nigeria and is spreading at an uncontrollable rate.

This pledge was inspired by a request from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon for $600 million to fight the epidemic. A statement from the Gates Foundation said: “To date, the Gates Foundation has committed more than $10 million of the $50 million to fight the Ebola outbreak, including $5 million to WHO for emergency operations and R&D assessments and $5 million to the US Fund for UNICEF to support efforts in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea to purchase essential medical supplies, coordinate response activities, and provide at-risk communities with life-saving health information.”

Reuters reported on 11 September 2014 that fellow Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen would announce that he would be donating $9 million to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to help fight the virus.

This comes at a time when Doctors Without Borders, the World Health Organization (WHO) and other groups have said resources to contain the epidemic and treat those affected are falling tragically short.

In a statement issued by the foundation, CDC Director Dr Tom Frieden said: “Ebola is raging through parts of West Africa like an out-of-control forest fire but it can be controlled if the world comes together.”

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