WHO welcomes United Kingdom’s donation of 700 hospital beds to Sierra Leone to fight Ebola

WHO welcomes the Government of the United Kingdom’s action to significantly increase support for tackling Ebola virus disease in West Africa. On Friday, 19 September, United Kingdom Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond announced the Government’s commitment to provide a total of 700 hospital beds to Sierra Leone.

This was part of the response to WHO’s call for countries to give massive support to West Africa. One of the greatest challenges is to create fully functioning Ebola treatment centres, with more beds and more trained health workers to provide care.

Of the 700 beds to be donated, 200 are being delivered, with the remainder to be delivered in the coming months, along with trained international staff to work in the treatment centres. In addition, United Kingdom military personnel will work with the Government of Sierra Leone to identify sites for additional centres and to provide engineering, logistics and planning expertise.

WHO’s Ebola response roadmap, launched on 28 August, aims to stop transmission in affected countries within 6–9 months and to prevent the international spread of the disease.