Secretary of State John Kerry said Wednesday that not enough countries are pitching in to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa, and said the United Nations is still $300 million short of the $1 billion it's hoping to raise.
"I'm here this morning to make an urgent plea to countries in the world to step up even further," Kerry said at a press conference with United Kingdom Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond. "While we are making progress, we are not where we can say that we need to be."
Kerry showed a chart noting that the U.S. and UK have contributed $120 million of the $691 million it has collected so far, and that $113 million of that came from the United States. The European Union has contributed $55 million, while Canada has thrown in $32 million.
But other countries have offered less than $5 million, including Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Norway, China and Italy, and many countries have contributed nothing.
"Those are not enough countries to make the difference to be able to deal with this crisis," he said. "We need people to step up now. Now is the time for action, not words."
Kerry said the effort will require donations of other resources as well.
"It is not just a question of sending people, though it is vital to send people," he said. "But we need Ebola treatment units, we need health care workers, we need medivac capacity, we need mobile laboratory and staff. We need non-medical support: telecommunications, generators, incinerators, public communications capacity, training, construction."
"All of these things are, frankly, urgent, in order to be able to quickly move to contain the spread of Ebola," he added.
Kerry's remarks came on the same day that the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital reported that Thomas Duncan, the first patient diagnosed with Ebola in the United States, has died.
Duncan's case has raised worries that others could travel to the United States and possibly spread the virus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said it would announce additional precautions, and on Wednesday, the Obama administration announced it would start taking the temperatures of people who arrive at five major U.S. airports from West Africa.
That effort will begin this weekend at JFK Airport in New York, and next week, airports at Newark, Dulles, Chicago and Atlanta will follow suit.