Tanzania: NGO Wages Relentless Battle Against HIV

A non-governmental organisation, Tanzania Health Promotion Support (THPS), has provided HIV counselling and testing services to 188,613 people this year as part of its health programmes.

THPS Technical Director Dr Alexander Christopher told reporters that 14,812 people were found to be HIV-positive and 19,147 started lifelong Antiretroviral Therapy (ART).

He said 51,622 people started and completed TB preventive treatment -- a six-month regimen to prevent TB infection among people living with HIV.

Dr Christopher revealed this during the commemoration of the World AIDS Day week in Kilimanjaro Region. He said through the THPS Mlango project, his organisation was able to reach out to 35,567 vulnerable people.

He said as far as HIV testing services were concerned, 5,833 (16.5 per cent) were found to be HIV-positive and 5,382 were linked to ART services.

Dr Christopher said 103 other vulnerable persons - the majority being drug addicts -- were diagnosed with TB and were also linked to treatment.

He named new projects as the US Agency for International Development- funded, the USAID Uhuru Tuberculosis and Family Planning Facility Solutions Local Organisation Network (LON) activity, PEPFAR/USAID Police and Prisons Activity and the Paza Sauti Project, a US Ambassador's Fund for HIV/ AIDS Relief (AFHR) project.

The three are among six THPS donor-funded projects currently under implementation. Others are PEPFAR/CDC Afya Kwanza programme, National HIV Laboratory Support Services (NHLS) and the Global Fund AMREFTHPS Mlango Project.

The NGO was also involved in mobilising cervical cancer testing among women and increasing screening services in rural areas.

A beneficiary of the THPS services, Rachel Joseph, said under the Amref and Global Fund, THPS enabled her establish a special project for her family.

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