Liberian president appeals directly to Obama for Ebola help

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has appealed directly to President Obama for help in combatting the Ebola epidemic in her country. 

“I am being honest with you when I say that at this rate, we will never break the transmission chain and the virus will overwhelm us,” Johnson Sirleaf wrote in a letter to Obama on Tuesday, according to The New York Times.

She requested that the U.S. provide 1,500 more beds in new hospitals across Liberia and asked for the U.S. to oversee operations at an Ebola hospital in her nation’s capital of Monrovia.

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Earlier this week, the administration announced it would send U.S. military personnel to set up a small health facility in Liberia to treat healthcare workers.

President Obama is scheduled to receive an in-person briefing on Ebola at the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta next week.

Members of Congress, meanwhile, are preparing to vote on a short-term spending bill as early as this week that includes $88 million in funding to combat Ebola, which the White House had requested. 

The Senate Appropriations Labor, Health and Human Services, Education Subcommittee will hold a hearing on Ebola Tuesday. Dr. Kent Brantly, a U.S. aid worker who recently survived the deadly disease, is among those who will testify.