Dar es Salaam. The US government has committed $3.6 million (Sh7.8 billion) to supporting Tanzania’s efforts in the fight against Covid-19. It has also redirected $1.9 million (Sh4.4 billion) from existing Usaid activities to help the country respond to the outbreak.
This has been revealed by the Usaid mission director to Tanzania Andy Karas on Wednesday June 3 in Dar es Salaam during a media briefing.
Karas said that it is critical to remember the importance of continuing other, more routine, health services, even during the Covid-19 epidemic.
“This amounts to roughly $5.3 million which was given in new programmed resource, bolstering risk communication, water and sanitation infection prevention and control public health messaging,” Karas said
He expressed further the commitment of continuing to coordinate and advocate with the donor community to ensure there are enough resources directed towards the fight against Covid-19 in the country.
Karas said that the donation to Tanzania, is part of nearly $6.5 billion provided by America people in government and non-government assistance and donations to the global Covid-19 response which is nearly 60 percent of the total global efforts.
The Usaid mission Director also recognized the efforts and commitment of the Tanzania government in the fight against poverty, health improvement and infrastructure development adding that the US government will continue its support to Tanzania which also includes the war against Covid-19.
According to Karas the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has committed $3 million in new funds and redirected more than $600,000 from existing funds to support surveillance, laboratory, and infection prevention and control efforts to contain the spread of Covid-19 in Tanzania.
He added that CDC continues to find creative ways to support response efforts including targeted technical assistance to regional/district health management teams. CDC was actively engaged in investigating the first cases of Covid-19 in Tanzania (Mainland and Zanzibar). It provided critical support to the development of surveillance resources, strategies, and interventions. Mr Karas added that his team in Tanzania supported the deployment in various regions the team to respond to clusters and provide critical technical assistance. The teams among other duties developed case investigation, contact tracing tools.
To ensure Covid-19 testing efficiency, more than $1.8 million has been identified to support lab efforts in Tanzania, with approximately $270,000 already leveraged for lab supplies, equipment, and assessments.