The European Union pledges aid to member states hit by the Ebola virus, says Vytenis Andriukaitis who is designate European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety.
Vytenis Andriukaitis
© DELFI / Tomas Vinickas

"Member states must undoubtedly have their own reserves but such issues might as well be raised as part of next year's budget plans," he told the Lithuanian national radio LRT on Tuesday.

Andriukaitis noted that the European Commission has already allocated funds for vaccine production and quarantine measures applied to African countries. He also stressed the importance of investment into vaccines and rejected a popular myth that vaccines are only the profit source for pharmaceutical companies.

"There's a very popular version explaining everything that if new diseases emerge, then they are undoubtedly stimulated by pharmaceutical companies. I am sorry but there are plenty of examples in the medical history when viruses change, mutate, and previously non-dangerous viruses mutate and become dangerous for people. Then we need to look for funds, and in this case we have pandemic signs and it is understandable that we cannot just sit and watch the virus is spreading. We need research and vaccination," he said.

Ebola has already killed over 4,000 people in Africa and there have been cases recorded in the United States of America, Spain and the Czech Republic.

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