Tanzania: Our Impact

In December 2010, Management Science for Health (MSH) launched the Tanzania Institutional Capacity Building Program (TZ-ICB). Senior leaders representing five implementing partners of the U.S.

Tanzania, like many countries in sub-Saharan Africa, is facing a human resource crisis in the health sector. There is a general shortage of qualified health workers throughout the country, but particularly in rural areas. Health workers in the rural areas are difficult to recruit and hard to retain, which exacerbates many health challenges related to malaria, HIV & AIDS, maternal and child health, and reproductive/family planning services.

On Wednesday, July 21, 2010, Dr. Edmund Rutta, Country Program Manager for the Strengthening Pharmaceutical Systems (SPS) Program, presented at the Management Sciences for Health (MSH), Global Health Council, and PATH Congressional Briefing entitled "Reaching Women and Children with Innovative Technologies." The event was held in conjunction with Representatives Albio Sires (NJ), Brian Baird (WA), Betty McCollum (MN), Barbara Lee (CA), Adam Smith (WA), Sheila Jackson Lee (TX), and Jim McDermott (WA) to a full standing room of over 100 guests, including two Members of Congress. Dr.

The MSH East African Drug Seller Initiative and the Tanzania Food and Drugs Authority (TFDA) finalized the rollout model for Tanzania’s accredited drug dispensing outlet (ADDO) program at a workshop in Morogoro, Tanzania, in September. MSH Senior Program Associate Edmund Rutta presented elements of the revised model at the Corporate Council on Africa’s 2009 US–Africa Business Summit, in a panel supported by the Rockefeller Foundation.

Coptic Waiting in Tent. Photo Credit: MSH StaffOn November 4–6, 2009, in Gisenyi, Rwanda, the Initiative on Adherence to Antiretrovirals of the International Network for the Rational Use of Drugs (INRUD-IAA) hosted its third annual meeting on antiretroviral therapy (ART) adherence. Results of an INRUD-IAA research study showed that the adherence indicators chosen for study are clinically meaningful—that is, they correlate to increases in patients’ CD4 counts and weight gain.

Many people in rural Tanzania seek health care and medicines from retail drug shops, called duka la dawa baridi, for reasons such as convenience. Historically, the Tanzania Food and Drugs Authority (TFDA) authorized duka la dawa baridi to provide nonprescription medicines; however, a 2001 assessment showed that many shops sold prescription drugs illegally and that the drug sellers were generally unqualified and untrained.

In a recent survey, a team from the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) and Management Sciences for Health found that human resource (HR) managers in four East African countries—Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda—want and need better preparation to carry out their responsibilities, which include recruitment and deployment of staff, HR planning and policy, and training. The study recommended seeking professionals for these roles and providing short courses in HR management and leadership.

Around the world, millions of dollars have been allocated to fight HIV/AIDS. National programs need sound financial management skills to efficiently disburse these funds, while organizations implementing programs need to access funds, use them appropriately, and promptly demonstrate results.Just two years ago in Tanzania, hundreds of civil society organizations struggled to access funding for urgent HIV/AIDS activities.

"We will expand, scale-up, and cover more districts...but only in partnership with other [non-governmental organizations] NGOs and the public sector." Staff from the East African Development Communication Foundation (EADCF) sit together in their office in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, nodding in agreement as the director reflects on the group's successes and describes how it will build on them to reach more Tanzanians with crucial HIV/AIDS information.Like many organizations in Tanzania, EADCF has struggled to understand not only how to access the millions of dollars promised by international donor

Warned that she was ill, we expected to find 50-year-old Salome Kombe in bed and ready to die. Though she is among an older demographic of HIV-infected Tanzanians, Salome is by no means retiring. Surprisingly, she walked to greet us, looking happy and strong. HIV-positive and living in a one-room shack, Salome is unemployed and struggles to care for three grandchildren; ensuring they have enough food is a daily effort. Her neighbors and family offer some support, but are equally poor.

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