Since its creation in 1963, the Health Department of the Archdiocese has been planning, delivering and monitoring health services all over its vast territory, especially to most remote inaccessible areas – the furthest being 476 km away from the Arusha offices.
At that time, almost 60 years ago, Bishop Durning was chairperson of the Tanzanian Episcopal Council (TEC) Medical Department. He had the vision to create a Diocesan health department through which all Diocesan health
From, 2020, the Health Department of the Archdiocese of Arusha has responsibility for:
- Three Hospitals
- Seven Health Centres
- Fifteen Dispensaries
- One Disability Rehabilitation Unit
- OneCentral Pharmacy
The Archdiocese also has a comprehensive program of primary, secondary and tertiary prevention and treatment for those infected or affected by HIV/AIDS.The flying medical services working with the Archdiocese provide weekly outreach mobile clinics, bringing essential health services to the most remote and inaccessible communities in the Archdiocese.
The role and function of the health department staff is becoming increasingly complex and demanding due to evolving national and local health policies, the human resource crisis and the decrease in donor support. In addition, the government is building own hospitals or is planning to, so the funds are on the decline.Also, the Archdiocese faces the daily challenge of sustainability of the health facilities especially those in remotes centres which serve communities in greatest poverty.
Nevertheless, the Catholic Archdiocese of Arusha is constant in its vision and mission to undertake all efforts to contribute towards a better health status of the people and to improve the quality of the health service.
Many Tanzanians still suffer from preventable and curable illness or disease. Life expectancy remains low at 51 years. Over 60% of the 40 million population live in poverty and survive on half a euro a day. 6.5% of people aged15-49 are infected with HIV/AIDS. This places Tanzania as the 12th most HIV and AIDS affected countries in the world.
In Tanzania, even though 94% of women attend Antenatal Clinics, only 47% deliver in health facilities. Many women receive no post-natal check up after the birth. Although generally preventable, the percentage woman dying during pregnancy is one of highest in the world at 10%. Out of every 1,000 live births, 144 newborn babies and 68 children under the age of one die.
Finances – or the constant lack thereof – present an additional challenge. So in order to generate income, floor space at hospitals is rented to small shops and/or canteens outsourced and opened for public (St. Elizabeth).
A successful support project is P4P. Since January 2006, the running costs of the Health Department have been supported by the external donor CORDAID as part of a Pay for Performance (P4P) Pilot Project. The aim of the P4P Pilot project was to improve the quality and access to health care through a pay for performance based on five health indicators. An evaluation of the project in 2009 confirmed that the overall aim of the project had been achieved.
As part of the sustainability plan for all of the health facilities, the Archdioceseof Arusha adopted the government’s Public Private Partnership (PPP) service agreements for Wasso, St. Elizabeth, Endulen, Mary Mother of the Church, Digodigo and Chekereni.
The government has built their own Hospitals and Health Centres so the sustainability of the three hospitals and other health facilities will includes:
- Income generating activities e.g. shops, pharmacy, canteen, chicken
- Specialized services
- Improve diagnostic services in their hospital
- Good customer care
The sustainability plan for the health department, proposes to establish an annual contribution from the health facilities once their sustainability has been achieved.
The Healthy Sustainability Plan also include the following Projects:
- Trinity Pharmacy which is being established as a centre for the procurement and supply of medicines for the health facilities and as income generating for the Health Department. Increase capital of Trinity Pharmacy from Tsh. 183,697,390 to 1 Billion.
- Development of one Residential House for income generation through rental accommodation.
- Income from various big and small donations from various benefactors.
Archdiocese of Arusha – Health Department
“MWONDOKO – Kuwajibika na kushirikiana katika Kristo“