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Military

Special Pay For US Troops In Ebola Battle? At Most $400 Per Month

U.S. Marines arrive in Liberia on Oct. 9, 2014.
DoD News
U.S. Marines arrive in Liberia on Oct. 9, 2014.

U.S. service members participating in the military's mission to stem the Ebola outbreak in West Africa will be paid up to $400 a month in special pay.

The Army Times breaks it down this way:

-[H]ardship duty pay-location of $150 a month for those troops in Liberia and Sierra Leone. This entitlement is retroactive to the day of arrival after 30 days in theater.

-[F]amily separation allowance (for members with dependents) of $250 a month. This entitlement is retroactive to the day of arrival after 30 days in theater.
But troops serving in West Africa don't qualify for a combat-zone tax exclusion or hostile fire pay.

The military's Ebola containment mission is expected to involve roughly 4,000 U.S. service members. Although the Department of Defense is taking every possible precaution to keep our troops from catching the virus, what happens if one of them does?

According to Stars and Stripes, a plan is already in place on how to medevac any sick service members out of Africa:

[O]n one of two jets specially equipped to provide medical treatment and prevent transmission of the contagious, deadly disease.

These jets, owned by Phoenix Air, have already medically evacuated nine patients struck down with Ebola to the United States and Europe.

Phoenix Air VP Dent Thompson told Stars and Stripes by phone last week:

“We’re it. We’ve done (six) evacuations back to the U.S. and three to Europe, two into Germany and one into France. It’s a steady program, we figure, for at least a year."

Army Gen. David Rodriguez, the chief of U.S. Africa Command, told reporters at the Pentagon earlier this week the mission in West Africa could last as long as a year:

“This is not a small effort and it’s not a short period of time.”

Marines Arrive in Liberia to Support Ebola Response