Tanzania is home to nearly 48 million people, most of whom live in rural areas with limited access to reproductive health care services. As a result, 25% of Tanzanian women would like to plan their families but do not have access to contraceptives, many pregnant Tanzanian women do not receive testing or counseling for HIV, and 50% of Tanzanian mothers do not deliver their babies at a health facility.
EngenderHealth, in partnership with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare (MOHSW), works in Tanzania nationwide on family planning (FP), gender issues, FP-HIV integration, and other health initiatives. The use of hormonal implants in Tanzania has increased steadily since 2004. The expansion of EngenderHealth’s FP program to all 26 regions of the country has also contributed to an increase in uptake of long-acting reversible contraceptives. The increase demonstrates the positive effect of interventions like the RESPOND Tanzania Project (RTP), which expanded services to lower-level facilities and promoted task shifting to nurse practitioners.
The Expand Family Planning Project (ExpandFP) complements the national FP program by training providers at 21 facilities who would not have been trained with existing resources in undersupported districts. EngenderHealth and the MOHSW work to increase access to and use of FP at the facility level, as well as using Special FP Days and mobile outreach services to access hard-to-reach communities.
EngenderHealth works to ensure reproductive rights of Tanzanian women and their families by integrating family planning with HIV and comprehensive postabortion care services. As part of our award-winning work in HIV, we facilitate outreach to marginalized groups, including sex workers, key and vulnerable populations, and youth; in 2008, we launched a national dialogue about engaging men in order to improve gender equity and reduce the prevalence of gender-based violence and disease.
Mothers wait with their children at a health clinic in Arusha.