World Bank pledges $200 million in emergency funding to fight Ebola

NEW YORK (CIHAN)- The World Bank Group will mobilize millions to aid affected families and communities and to build up public health systems in West Africa. The pledge comes after calls for assistance from the three African countries hardest hit by Ebola and the World Health Organization (WHO).

World Bank Group president Jim Yong Kim said today (4 Aug) “this money will go for very basic support, for medical supplies, medical staff and also to help the people who are facing economic hardship as a result of this epidemic.”

He also stressed the World Bank Group is doing this under the leadership of the World Health Organization (WHO).

He said “when I was working at the World Health Organization in 2003 at the tail of the SARS epidemic we learnt several things: one, these epidemics can happen anywhere, and two, when they do happen the world community has to respond to put in place those systems that can prevent these kinds of outbreaks from happening again.”

The head of the World Bank underlined “we have a responsibility to that particular region of Africa. We are gonna do everything we can –not only to provide support in the short term- but to really think about building the kind of public health systems that the people of those three countries deserve.”

According to the WHO, the scale of the ongoing outbreak is unprecedented.