CDC in Tanzania

CDC in Tanzania

A healthcare worker takes blood from an infant’s foot in Mwanza to test the infant for HIV. Photo credit: Ariel Glaser Pediatric AIDS Healthcare Initiative

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) established an office in Tanzania in 2001 to support HIV/AIDS prevention and expanded through the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) in 2003. CDC works with Tanzania to strengthen tuberculosis (TB) prevention efforts for people living with HIV; enhance laboratory, surveillance, and workforce capacity to respond to disease outbreaks through the Global Health Security Agenda; and implement interventions to prevent and control malaria under the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative.

As new health threats emerge (e.g., COVID-19) CDC and partners are well-placed to leverage past successful initiatives and rapidly respond to new public health challenges.

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CDC Impact in Tanzania


HIV is a leading cause of death and a health threat to millions worldwide. As a key implementer of PEPFAR, CDC works with Tanzania to build a sustainable, high-impact national HIV response program to accelerate progress toward the UNAIDS global targets to control the HIV epidemic. CDC works to adapt and adopt new technology and evidence-based approaches to enhance service delivery, improve patient outcomes, and, ultimately, achieve HIV epidemic control and end TB.

CDC works with the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children on the mainland, and the Ministry of Health in Zanzibar to support HIV testing, prevention, and treatment services, and to strengthen health systems. CDC supports HIV rapid testing quality assurance; early infant HIV diagnosis; viral load testing; health worker training, deployment, and retention; and strengthening health information systems to inform data for decision-making.

Additionally, CDC provides technical assistance and support to Tanzania’s lab systems to increase laboratory detection capacity. CDC also supports TB prevention efforts for people living with HIV. This work includes providing support for the roll-out of lab initiatives for TB diagnostics, points of care, and surveillance for TB drug resistance.


Nearly 170,000 additional adults and children received lifesaving antiretroviral therapy in 2020


Over 100,000 people with HIV were identified through index testing – the process of offering HIV tests to contacts of people living with HIV


24 laboratories received international-standards accreditation


74 laboratories enrolled in WHO’s Strengthening Laboratory Management Towards Accreditation program


More than 140 laboratory scientists and technologists trained in microbiology and quality management systems

Global Health Security

In today’s connected world, disease threats like COVID-19 can spread faster and more unpredictably than ever before. A fragile public health system, and borders that span eight countries, including the Great Lake region, leaves Tanzania vulnerable to disease outbreaks and epidemic spread.

CDC supports Tanzania to strengthen its International Health Regulation core capacities to comprehensively prevent, rapidly detect and effectively respond to public health threats. CDC supports activities to strengthen disease surveillance such as the electronic Integrated Disease Surveillance and Response System, border health processes, enhanced laboratory testing for pathogens like Ebola and COVID-19, and establishing national and subnational Emergency Operation Centers.


488 residents graduated from the Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program (advanced, intermediate, frontline) to rapidly detect and respond to disease outbreaks

Health worker

6 Emergency Operations Centers (1 national, 5 sub-national) set up to coordinate and respond to national public health emergencies


Malaria is a leading cause of death and disease in many countries, and young children and pregnant women are most affected. Under the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative, CDC has assigned a resident advisor to malaria-endemic Tanzania to support the implementation of malaria prevention and control interventions that include long-lasting insecticide-treated nets and indoor residual spraying, preventing malaria in pregnancy, and improving diagnostics and case management.


Malaria prevalence among children under age 5 decreased from 18% to 7% over 10 years

Project ECHO

Project ECHO uses teleconferencing to teach through case-based learning and sharing of knowledge between participants and subject matter experts. ECHO virtual sessions cover various topics, including HIV and TB clinical care as well as key other initiatives.


More than 130 hospitals, health centers, and high-volume dispensaries across 27 regions in Tanzania use ECHO teleconferencing to teach

CDC Staff in Tanzania
  • 16 U.S. Assignees
  • 60 Locally Employed
Tanzania at a Glance
  • Population: > 58 million (World Bank 2019)
  • Per capita income: $3,140 (Population Reference Bureau)
  • Life expectancy: F 67 / M 63 years
  • Infant mortality rate: 40/1,000 live births

Sources: World Bank 2019, Population Reference Bureau

Tanzania Top 10 Causes of Death
  1. Neonatal disorders
  2. Lower respiratory infection
  4. Stroke
  5. Tuberculosis
  6. Ischemic heart disease
  7. Malaria
  8. Diarrheal diseases
  9. Congenital defects
  10. Cirrhosis

Source: GBD Compare 2019, Tanzania

Page last reviewed: March 15, 2021
Content source: Global Health