Stop TB Partnership

TB Alert Launches Integrated HIV and TB Project in Manicaland Province, Zimbabwe

7th December 2015, Zimbabwe - TB Alert launched an integrated HIV and TB project in Manicaland Province of Zimbabwe in partnership with Development Aid People to People (DAPP) Zimbabwe. The project, funded by UK Aid, raises awareness of TB and HIV, identifies HIV+ and TB affected people and links patients to treatment, thus reducing deaths, containing onward infection and the development of drug resistance, and preventing poverty.

The project launch workshop was organised on the 7th of December 2015 and was addressed by the Head of DFID Zimbabwe Ms Annabel Gerry, Provincial Medical Director for Manicaland Province Dr Mafaune, Chair of Humana People to People Mr Ib Hansen, Chair of TB Alert Mr Paul Sommerfeld and DAPP Country Director Mr Luckson Soda.

The project aligns with WHO’s ENGAGE-TB approach to integrate community-based TB and HIV/TB prevention, care and control activities. It is based in Mutasa and Chimanimani districts of Zimbabwe. The UNDP Zimbabwe MDG report indicates a 70% prevalence of households in poverty in Manicaland Province. Both districts have a high HIV prevalence rate compared to a national average of 10% (Mutasa: 12% & Chimanimani: 14.7%) and between 55% - 87% TB patients who had their HIV status recorded were found to be HIV positive (Mutasa: 70%, Chimanimani: 78%). Only 37% of all TB cases in the province were provided DOTS by a trained health worker.

TB Alert has recently initiated similar projects in Malawi in Mulanje district also funded by UK Aid and Thyolo district, funded by Comic Relief. These are all based on a new paradigm for integrating HIV and TB at the grassroots through a combination of activities that tackle stigma and discrimination, strengthen clinical services, build family and community capacity to support the patients and improve the nutrition status of HIV and TB affected families.