Royal Navy hospital ship sets sail for Africa to fight Ebola

Proud members of the ship's company watch as the giant warship inches her way to sea for the first time. From left, Able Seaman (AB) Natasha Elford, AB Layton Toward and AB Richard Mead

HMS Queen Elizabeth begins the long voyage to Portsmouth

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ROYAL Navy sailors have left British shores in a bid to tackle the Ebola outbreak in west Africa.

Servicemen and women are expected to reach Sierra Leone by November after Royal Navy hospital ship RFA Argus left its moorings in Cornwall yesterday.

As reported in The News, Royal Navy sailors from Portsmouth are among those being sent to Africa to help with the Ebola crisis.

Strict rules to keep the ship sterile from Ebola include banning personnel from going ashore on leave during up to three months of deployment.

Royal Marines who leave RFA Argus for operations in the local community will go through a decontamination process upon their return.

Medics will take their temperatures twice a day and anyone who shows signs of Ebola will be flown to a British treatment clinic.

Meanwhile, British army medics including staff at Ministry of Defence hospital units in Portsmouth have already begun arriving in Sierra Leone to help with the battle against the disease.

A team of 91, including nurses, doctors and infectious disease consultants, join 40 soldiers already in the west African country to work at a UK-supported treatment centre, which has 12 of its 92 beds set aside for healthcare workers who risk infection while treating others.

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