Benjamin Mkapa Foundation Provides Training for New Employees in the Health Sector

Dodoma, Tanzania

BMF in close collaboration with the Government, particularly the Ministry of Health Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children (MOHCDGEC) & President Office Regional and Local Government Authorities (PORALG), through the implemented Resilient and Sustainable Systems for Health (RSSH) Project, has jointly completed the processes of filling the vacant posts under RSSH project.  A total of one hundred and ninety (190) i.e. 70% of 271 recruited Health Care Workers were mainstreamed into the government system during the year 2018/2019.

Speaking during the staff orientation and capacity building training for new health workers that was conducted in Dodoma, Tanzania from 28-30th October 2019, Dr Ntuli Kapologwe, Director of the Department of Public Health (PORALG) urged the newly recruited health workers to listen very carefully to what is being directed to them, and to do as it is required at their assigned areas of work. The training aimed at ensuring that the new health workers carry out their work responsibilities in their assigned areas.

“Go and work because the measure of success in the health sector is the public, as you go there go with the mindset of  helping  your fellow Tanzanians and leave a  mark on the work , including protecting the dignity of the Government,” said Dr Kapologwe.

Dr Ntuli Kapologwe, Director of the Department of Public Health (PORALG)

“From June 2018, the Mkapa Foundation (BMF) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health, Social Development, Gender, Elderly and Children (MOHCDGEC) started implementing the Sustainable and Patient Health System Project i.e. (RSSH) Resilient and Sustainable Systems for Health expected to be completed by December 2020.

One of the interventions implemented through the RSSH Project – Global Fund is to recruit Health professionals and arrange for them to work on project benefit regions which are Simiyu, Geita, Kigoma, Tabora, Katavi, Kagera, Shinyanga, Mara, Dodoma and Mwanza

Among the BMF’s implemented interventions under RSSH is recruitment of Health Care Workers. BMF implement HRH recruitment intervention under RSSH. During the first year of the Project a total 271 were recruited and placed in 75 LGA’s, whereby a total 190 i.e. 70% of recruited Health Care Workers were mainstreamed into the government system during the year 2018/2019.” Stated Dr Ntuli

Ms Rahma Musoke BMF Monitoring and Evaluation Manager speaking during the Orientation

Ms Rahma Musoke BMF’s Monitoring and Evaluation Manager Said “The Management of Benjamin Mkapa Foundation is committed to ensuring that the recruitment and selection of all employees are fair, open and transparent and will comply with all relevant legislation of the United Republic of Tanzania. BMF will continue to complement Government efforts by being committed to apply strategic interventions to address shortage of Human Resources for Health (HRH) which stand to be 52% that mostly affect primary health facilities in underserved LGA’s.”

The newly recruited Health workers during the Orientation

The Ministry of Health, Social Development, Gender, Elderly and Children has commissioned the Benjamin William Mkapa Foundation (as a Sub-Recipient) to carry out some of the activities of the RSSH project in two main areas, Human Resources of the Health Sector including the establishment and coordination of distance learning Platform e-learning for health workers and Responsive Community Systems. Where the total cost of running the project is expected to be 18.9 billion.

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Maternal and Newborn Services Significantly Improved in Nkasi, Thanks to BMF and Japan Embassy

Nkasi-Rukwa, Tanzania

The Deputy Head of Mission of Japan Embassy in Tanzania, Ambassador Takeda Katshutoshi yesterday witnessed a mother at Kirando Health Center along the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika in Nkasi District, Rukwa region delivering through cesarean section being an obstetric emergency case.

Medical surgeons at the health facility during cesarean section were using all six medical equipment donated by the Government of Japan through Benjamin William Mkapa Foundation (BMF). The same were also donated at Mwimbi Health Center in Kalambo District at a combined cost of over TZS139/= Million.

A Universal Anaesthesia Machine (UAM) being used during a delivery through cesarean section at Kirando Health Center. Along the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika in Nkasi District Rukwa region, UAM is among the six medical equipment donated by the Government of Japan via Benjamin Mkapa Foundation (BMF). It is the first internationally-certified anesthesia machine that can generate its own medical oxygen and deliver anesthesia’s without electricity.

“I’m deeply touched to witness the cesarean section being done  at the health facility here at Kirando being one of the successful obstetric emergency cases being performed here this is my first time in life to observe this undertaking in close proximity.

I have also witnessed the new healthy born baby and had the rare opportunity to witness medical equipment’s donated by Japanese Government through BMF being properly and efficiently used. Though the donation is small but its impact is very powerful” added the Japanese envoy.

The Deputy Head of Mission of Japan in Tanzania, Ambassador Takeda Katshutoshi pictured happy to see the new born baby who was delivered through cesarean section at Kirando Health Center in Nkasi District Rukwa region using equipment donated by Japanese Government through BMF. With him is the acting Regional Medical Officer (RMO) for Rukwa Dr .Emmanuel Mtika who was also present during the cesarean section delivery at the facility.

After witnessing the mother delivering through cesarean section, Dr Nyamwihura said that the Japanese Envoy, Amb. Katshutoshi was impressed to witness the donated medical equipment being used properly and efficiently.

“We really saw the impact of the support we receive from our donors,” she added.

On his welcoming note the Nkasi DMO, Dr Mvogogo briefed the Japanese envoy that  since the  installation of  the medical equipment donated by Japanese Embassy through BMF on May 28 this year about 130 mothers delivered  through  cesarean section being obstetric emergency cases  and 46 other patients were non-obstetric  emergency cases.

“Services of maternal and newborn have significantly been improved as the number of mothers delivering at the health facility has increased from 150 to 180 per month  an average of  five to seven mothers delivering per day” noted the DMO.

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Japan Embassy through Mkapa Foundation Donate Medical Equipment to Two Health Facilities in Rukwa

Rukwa, Tanzania

The Benjamin Mkapa Foundation (BMF) has handed over medical equipment valued at US $ 62,582 equivalent to approximately over TZS138 Million to operating theaters of Kirando Health Centre and Mwimbi Health Centre in Nkasi and Kalambo Districts respectively in Rukwa region.

The Deputy  Head  of Mission of Japan  in Tanzania, Ambassador Takeda Katshutoshi fixing a sticker on the Universal Anaesthesia Machine (UAM) officiating the handing over cerebration for installation of medical equipment which will improve Comprehensive Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care (CEmONC) at Mwimbi Health Center in Kalambo District Rukwa region on Monday

The handing over ceremony for  the project of  installing the medical equipment for the operating theaters at both heath facilities was witnessed by The Deputy Head of Mission of Japan in Tanzania, Ambassador Takeda Katshutoshi who cut the ribbon to officiate the occasion.

The colorful events took place separately on November 11 and 12 this year first at Mwimbi health facility in Kalambo District and then at Kirando health facility along the shoreline of Lake Tanganyika in Nkasi District.

“It is always a privilege to witness yet another contribution made from the people of Japan to the people of Tanzania “Said the Ambassador.

He further noted that on February 18, this year, a grant contract was signed between the Government of Japan and BMF of which the former extended US $ 62,582 by that time, equivalent to over TZS138 Million for the purpose of installation of medical equipment to enable emergency surgeries at the duo health facilities.

On her part the BMF Program Manager – Service Delivery, Dr Adeline Saguti Nyamwihura, said the installation of medical equipment will improve Comprehensive Emergency Obstetric and Newborn Care (CEmONC) at both health facilities.

The Deputy Head of Mission of Japan in Tanzania, Ambassador Takeda Katshutoshi in a group photo with the medical staff of Kirando Health Center as well as the Benjamin Mkapa Foundation (BMF) Program Manager – Service Delivery, Dr. Adeline Saguti Nyamwihura (first on the left), the Acting Regional Medical Officer (RMO) for Rukwa Dr. Emanuel Mtika (second right) and the District Medical Officer (DMO) for NkasI Dr. Hashim Mvogogo (first on the right).

She named the medical equipment supported by Japan’s Embassy being universal anesthesia machine, autoclave, theatre table, oxygen concentrator, suction machine and operation lamp each to both health facilities.

“The uniqueness of the Universal Anaesthesia Machine – UAMis that it’sthe first internationally-certified anaesthesia machine that can generate its own medical oxygen and deliver anaesthesia without electricity.UAM has a built-in oxygen concentrator that produces its own oxygen in addition to providing standard connectors for cylinder, pipeline and portable oxygen” she added.

Earlier, the Kalambo District Commissioner (DC) Ms. Juliet Binyura said over TZS10Millionhas been allocated so far for preventive maintenance for the installed medical equipment at Mwimbi health facility.

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Government Embarks on Strategy to Reduce Out-Of-Pocket Expenses in Healthcare

Tanzania like many other countries is embarking on health financing and Primary Health Care (PHC) reforms that will have important implications for progress towards Universe Health Coverage (UHC).

To begin with, the Government of Tanzania is developing a new health financing strategy to enable access to financial protection, as well as affordable and cost-effective quality health care.

This was said by the Deputy Minister of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children Dr Faustine Ndugulile when he delivered his speech during the Health Symposium organized by Benjamin Mkapa Foundation (BMF) on October 1, 2019 in Dar es Salaam whereby the stakeholders discussed various issues related to health sector.

Despite all the successes that Tanzania as a nation has so far achieved, there are challenges that need to be addressed include increasing Out-Of-Pocket expenses in healthcare,” said the minister.

A happy father and child after receiving their Health Insurance Card

The minister acknowledged that the expenses are attributable to low health insurance coverage in Tanzania, however, he noted that the government is developing a new single National Health Insurance scheme with the goal of reducing Out-Of-Pocket expenditure.

Furthermore, in improving financial management as an avenue towards greater efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare service delivery, the Direct Health Facility Financing (DHFF) system has been rolled out nationwide across the Primary Health care facilities, according to the Minister.

The minister also disclosed that rural-urban migration is another challenge facing the sector, citing that the situation has impact on the health systems and structures.
With a population of estimated 55.9 million, Tanzania total expenditure on health per capital is estimated at 7 percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Dr Faustine Ndugulile speaking during the Health Symposium

The increased population estimated to be 89 million in 2035, economic transitioning and rural- urban migration has impact on the health systems and will continue to exhaust the health system.

According to the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF), 65 per cent of the Tanzanian population doesn’t have access to the quality health services in the country because they have are not enrolled on health insurance schemes.

NHIF’s Director General Dr Bernard Konga during the panel sessions held at the Symposium asserted that people remain uncovered because the current system doesn’t declare the health insurance as mandatory.

It is high time to make health insurance mandatory rather than optional for Tanzania to achieve the UHC,” said Dr Bernard.

Mr. Bernard Konga NHIF Director General

However, the DG said NHIF has embarked on comprehensive strategies to improve the health insurance coverage in Tanzania, targeting both formal and informal sector players.

BMF’s Chief Executive Officer Dr Ellen Mkondya-Senkoro during the Symposium reiterated BMF’s commitment to apply strategic interventions to address programmatic dimensions including the limitation in financing and technical support that hinders access and quality of health services and functionality of health facilities.

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