Tanzania Technical Support Services Project: Our Impact

 {Photo credit: Flor Truchi/MSH}Anna Mzeru, Assistant Nursing Officer at Yombo Dispensary in Bagamoyo, Tanzania, shows facility data for HIV-positive patients, including those lost to follow-up and those currently on first- or second-line antiretroviral treatment.Photo credit: Flor Truchi/MSH

By Megan MontgomeryDays are long for Anna Mzeru.A nurse at a health dispensary in the Bagamoyo region of Tanzania, she is one of only two medical staff at a facility that should have nine to be fully staffed. She and the other provider see as many as 120 patients per day, and attend an average of 15 deliveries per month. “We sometimes leave very late, but we can’t leave the patients here. They need to be seen,” she says.The significant shortage of health workers at the clinic is common. Tanzania has a 56% vacancy rate across both public and private health care facilities.

{Photo credit: Paul Bwathondi/MSH}Speratus Macarius, a lab technician at Kigamboni Health Centre in Tanzania, checks a test order on the facility’s new electronic medical records system.Photo credit: Paul Bwathondi/MSH

With support from MSH, Tanzania is overhauling its digital health infrastructure, including introducing electronic medical records (EMRs) and a patient ID system, in hopes of dramatically improving its health services, especially for HIV/AIDS.

{Photo credit: Peter Mbago/MSH}Two health tutors assess a nurse for undertaking task-sharing activities in Bagamoyo District.Photo credit: Peter Mbago/MSH

Tanzania’s Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, the Elderly, and Children (MOH) is committed to addressing the country’s critical shortage of health care workers. To this end it endorsed a task-sharing approach in January 2016 to optimize use of existing staff to accelerate universal health coverage, improve delivery of HIV/ AIDS services, and address other health needs.

{Photo credit: Brooke Huskey / MSH}Photo credit: Brooke Huskey / MSH

Tanzania’s Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, the Elderly, and Children (MOH) recently approved a health sector task sharing implementation plan with support from the Tanzania Technical Support Services Project (TSSP), led by Management Sciences for Health.The plan will assist public health institutions to improve human resources for health (HRH), which will help increase essential HIV service coverage through improved service delivery. Implementation will begin in July 2017.