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REMARKS MADE BY THE GUEST SPEAKERS, HON. DR. FAUSTINE NDUGULILE

REMARKS MADE BY THE GUEST SPEAKERS, HON. DR. FAUSTINE NDUGULILE, DEPUTY MINISTER FOR HEALTH, COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT, GENDER, ELDERLY AND CHILDREN DURING THE HEALTH SYMPOSIUM HELD ON 1ST OCTOBER 2019, AT THE SERENA HOTEL, DAR ES SALAAM

 

 

Your Excellency, Benjamin William Mkapa

Deputy Permanent Secretaries

Ambassadors

Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Mkapa Foundation

Representatives of International Organizations and UN Agencies;

Representatives of Government Institutions

Company Representatives,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

 

It is my great honor to be present here today to officiate this Health Symposium organized by the Benjamin William Mkapa Foundation.

 

Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let me start by commending Benjamin Mkapa Foundation for being a good partner to the Government of Tanzania. Your work in areas of Human Resources for Health, HIV/AIDS and many others have contributed significantly to the gains we have attained in the health sector.

I would also like to congratulate the outgoing Board of Trustees for a job well done. For the incoming Board of Trustees, it is my hope that you will take this organization into higher heights.

Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen

Tanzania has made substantial gains in improving access and quality of health services. Allow me to mention a few:

  1. Overall childhood survival has increased over the years with vaccination coverage currently at 97% among all eligible children.
  2. Malaria prevalence, incidence and mortality have declined.
  3. TB treatment success rate is high, but there is still challenge in case detection.
  4. Steady progress is being made towards the 90-90-90 HIV/AIDS. PMTCT services are currently over 90%.
  5. Increased availability of essential medicines to over 95% coupled with increased Government budget towards medicines and other commodities.
  6. Infrastructure upgrading to improve access to health services.

 

Despite all these successes, there are challenges that need to be addressed. These include;

  1. Fast growing population due to low Family planning uptake and high fertility rate.
  2. High maternal and neonatal mortality rates
  3. Rural-urban migration.
  4. Changing pattern of diseases
  5. Competing national priorities which have put a strain on budgetary allocation to social services.
  6. Increasing costs out of pocket expenses in healthcare.
  7. Inadequate Human Resources for health

 

Let me assure you that the Government is working closely with its development partners on specific interventions to address some of these challenges.

Some of these measures encompass different health financing strategies, including a Single National Health Insurance, better Financial management by improving and using Direct Health Facility Financing, promotion Family planning and use of innovation to bridge HRH gaps to mention a few.

 

Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen

Health systems strengthening is critical component of the 2030 agenda for sustainable development goals and universal health coverage (UHC). With this in mind, we need to look into ways that will ensure quality, equity, efficiency, accountability, resilience and sustainability of health services.

We also need to look into the ways health services are delivered. For many years, we have been focusing on curative services, we now need to look into health promotion, prevention and rehabilitation. Unlike with the communicable diseases, where are patient can graduate from a health system once treated, with NCDs, the patient is tied to the health systems for life. We need to now focus more on preventing people getting sick rather treating the sick. Failure to do so, it is a failure of the health system.

 

Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen,

 

To meet the health-related targets and make progress towards sustainable development, Government is making progress in prioritizing health prevention and promotion measures. To illustrate this, on 16th of November, we will be launching a national NCD programme with strong components of health promotion, prevention curative and rehabilitation.

In this regard, we are looking at complementary efforts of community health workers whom we believe will further add value in health promotion and prevention besides curative care at the community level.

 

 

Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I wish to reiterate the Government of Tanzania’s commitment and its profound interest to continue working in partnership with the Development Partners, Private Sector as well as the Civil Society organizations to reach out each and every individual residing in Tanzania, with better health services.

 

On behalf of the MOHCDGEC, I hereby urge all players in the development sector to continue working in a coordinated fashion and in alignment with the national priorities, policies, systems and structure in-order to reach better health outcomes.  It is on this ground that I hereby commend highly the Mkapa Foundation, a home-bred local institution that has raised up to be one of the reliable and trustworthy organizations, which the Government and many other partners are keen to work with, in advancing the national health sector priorities.

 

Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Before I wind up my remarks, I am informed today that the Mkapa Foundation will be launching its 3rd Strategic Business Plan for the coming 5 years. It is my greatest hope that the Foundation will make effective use of the MTR results and address the areas we have notable gaps in health systems. I further look forward seeing the Foundation continue bringing innovative ideas and working hand in hand with the Government in translating the upcoming HSSPV which will be guiding us through the transitional phase from low income to middle income country. I would to use this opportunity to assure you of the Government cooperation in the implementation of SBPIII.

I also look forward to a vibrant and evidence-based discussions from our panelists that will further feed into the process of shaping the upcoming national frameworks for the health sector.

After these few remarks, I once again say thank you and I now declare this health symposium officially opened.

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