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U.S. Aid To Liberia Important For Health And Development Improvements

“Even now, eight years after our civil war ended, Liberia faces a huge uphill battle,” Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf writes in a Washington Post opinion piece, adding that “[w]ith support from the United States, we have been able to make progress. … It is critical that this aid continues in next year’s budget.”

“President Obama has rightly focused his Global Health Initiative on doing more of what we know works. Basic services such as providing clean water and sanitation play a major role in preventing and stemming outbreaks of other diseases and in improving nutrition. Aid spent on such services has been shown to be among the most cost-effective ways to advance health and development,” Sirleaf, who also is a WaterAid goodwill ambassador, writes. She notes that she believes continued support from the U.S. will allow Liberia “to sustain its own development and end its need for foreign aid” within a decade. Sirleaf concludes, “We look forward to a day when our economy thrives, when our children no longer suffer from preventable diseases and when the women of our country can move beyond mere subsistence and have genuine opportunity” (8/12).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.