Quality of care in Tanzania
In Tanzania, a National Health and Social Welfare Quality Improvement Strategic Plan and a Quality Improvement Framework in Health Care define the work of quality of care. The Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (RMNCAH) Strategy (2016-2020) sets out to:
- Reduce MMR from 542 to 292 per 100000 by 2020
- See a decrease in newborn mortality from 21 to 16 per 1000 live births by 2020
- Bring down the under-5 mortality rate from 54 to 40 per 1000 live births
Six regions are learning districts in the Quality of Care Network, facilities on both the mainland and Zanzibar that experience high volumes of deliveries, maternal and perinatal deaths, are poorly performing on RMNCAH indicators and have motivated staff were selected as learning sites.
Their immediate improvement goals are to reduce the high levels of maternal and perinatal deaths, increase the practice of initiation of breast feeding within the first hour after birth, improve the availability of quality emergency obstetric and newborn care services and their access through using ambulances for emergency referrals.
The Ministry of Health provides guidance with a package of quality interventions to build a supportive environment, support QI changes in facilities, monitor progress and involve communities in improving care.
Partners working with the Ministry of Health in implementing the QoC Network already include UNICEF/ WHO, USAID, GIZ, the World Bank, Jhpiego and Ifakara Health Institute.
Photo: Gift Moses (not in picture) holds her newborn baby girl in the Mbeya Regional Hospital in Mbeya, Tanzania. © UNICEF/Holt