Dar es Salaam — With support from the U.S. government through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC) has launched a new project to strengthen the capacity of health facilities, health workers, religious leaders and people with disabilities to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The launch event for the Pambana na Uviko-19 project was held today in Dar with the U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania, Prime Minister of Tanzania, Archbishop of Dar-es-Salaam, President of the Tanzania Episcopal Conference, and Secretary General of the Tanzania Episcopal Conference in attendance.
The U.S. government through USAID has provided USD550,000 to TEC to implement the Pambana na Uviko-19 project. The aims to support Tanzania’s national response efforts to the COVID-19 pandemic, facilitating procurement of medical equipment such as oxygen cylinders, patient monitors, and oxygen concentrators in 12 hospitals in Dar es Salaam, Kagera, Bukoba, Kigoma, Mbeya, Morogoro, Ruvuma, Arusha, Kilimanjaro, Singida, Mtwara and Iringa.
Pambana na UVIKO-19 will enhance the skills of health workers to improve COVID-19 patient management and support administration of COVID-19 vaccines across the 12 regions in line with Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender and Children (MOHCDGEC) and World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines.
TEC stated that the support is coming at the right time as COVID-19 continues to affect the lives of many Tanzanians. The investment in vital lifesaving equipment and training of medical staff will strengthen the capacity of TEC hospitals to respond to those who have serious, life threatening COVID-19 symptoms. “We commend USAID for extending their support to raise awareness on the importance of COVID-19 vaccination in saving people’s lives. The project will ensure many people are educated and get vaccinated,” the Archbishop Jude Thaddaeus Ruwa’ichi of the Archdiocese of Dar es Salaam said.
U.S Ambassador to Tanzania, Dr. Donald Wright observed, “While mitigating the effects of COVID-19 is critical, the best way to address the pandemic is to get the virus controlled before it infects people. The widespread administration of vaccines globally is the most effective way of ending the pandemic.” The Ambassador reaffirmed the U.S government’s commitment to mitigate COVID-19 through a coordinated approach and urged those present to get vaccinated and spread the word that vaccines are safe and effective and represent our best hope of defeating COVID-19 both here in Tanzania and globally.