Redstone Arsenal officials discuss Army’s response in West Africa

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REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. (WHNT) -- Teams from the Army Materiel Command, headquartered at Redstone Arsenal, are coordinating the shift of supplies to West Africa.

The AMC is setting up the infrastructure, including roads, power supplies, and water capabilities for bathing, that will support soldiers and medical aid workers.

"We needed the ability to have them get into the country, move them around, and provide them sustainment capabilities," said Andrew Kim, AMC Command Surgeon.

Efforts are concentrated in Liberia so far.

Monday, troops from Fort Campbell deployed. They're some of an expected 3,000 to arrive before the end of December to, among other things, build Ebola treatment units (ETU's) for those who are infected.

"We have to help the people at the source, not wait until it gets to the United States," said Kim. "By then, it's probably too late and too expensive."

He said the mission in West Africa is going well, but it's far from over.

Officials say they're doing their best to keep the troops stationed in Liberia safe, but army leaders are just as concerned about when they come home. Troops returning from West Africa will undergo 21 days of containment.

Those containment areas are located in military installations in Virginia, North Carolina, Washington, Italy and Germany.

"During that time, [the soldiers] will have internet access, cell phones, computers, entertainment. And they will be monitored at least twice a day if not more for any health symptoms they have," said Kim.

Kim said this is a preventative step to keep soldiers' families from getting sick if they are released too early.

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