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Investing in the future
Improved health care system

Investing in children's health equals investing in a society's future. Tanzania is aware of that and has addressed the issue. And with notable success: the east African country has achieved the fourth Millennium Development Goal – reducing child mortality by two thirds by 2015 – even before the deadline. To get this far, Tanzania significantly improved basic health care. This also includes making immunisation available that can protect children from life-threatening diseases such as pneumonia or diarrhoea.

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Saving lives
Germany supports immunisation programmes in Tanzania

The targeted support that Germany has provided for immunisation programmes in Tanzania has helped to ensure that in 2012 more than 1.6 million children were vaccinated against five potentially deadly diseases: tetanus, pertussis, diphtheria, hepatitis B and Haemophilus Influenzae type b.

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Protecting against pneumococcal and rotavirus infections
Immunisation protects against widespread diseases

The funds that were made available by Germany and support from Gavi allowed Tanzania in 2013 to introduce vaccines against pneumococcal and rotavirus infections, which protect against pneumonia and diarrhoeal diseases – two major killers of small children in developing countries.

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Immunisation outside of hospitals
Visiting family homes to provide vaccinations

Mwatima Khamis is a nurse in eastern Zanzibar. She visits families at their home in order to provide vaccinations to children that live far away from any health centre. Health workers like Ms Khamis usually use such visits to give mothers advice on preventive health care for their children.

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Seizing every opportunity
Health workers on their way to patients

Tanzania has set itself a goal: reaching every child with live-saving vaccines, independent of where it may live. Health teams travel even where there are no roads, or where boats are the only means of transport. In order to reach the children on the Zanzibar Archipelago, health workers have no other choice but to board a sailboat. They carry the vaccines in cool boxes as they need to be refrigerated at all times, even where no refrigerator is available.

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An investment that pays off
Children are immunised against measles and rubella

A girl waits to be vaccinated against measles and rubella at its school in Kindi, a village near Moshi, Tanzania. "Immunisation isn't simply an inexpensive way to fight diseases and lower death rates. It is also an economic investment in families and the entire country," says Dr Seif Rashid, Tanzania's Minister of Health.

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Closing gaps in the cold chain
Solar-powered refrigerators for vaccines

One of the greatest challenges is to ensure that vaccines are constantly refrigerated, including during transportation and storage. Dr Flora Kessy presents a solar-powered refrigerator for storing vaccines. The Endulen hospital is located in the heart of the Ngorongoro national park in northern Tanzania. The electricity it needs is supplied by solar modules and gas.

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Curbing the cancer scourge
Specialised health centre for treating cervical cancer

Waiting area of the Ocean Road Cancer Institute in Dar Es Salaam, the only hospital in Tanzania that specialises in cancer. More than 5,400 patients were treated here in 2013, approximately 70 per cent of them women. Most of the patients suffer from cervical cancer, often late-stage cancer for which only palliative care can be provided. That is why immunisation that can protect women is so important.

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Reducing the risk of infection through immunisation
Cervical cancer

Yustina, Irene and Aisha received a dose of human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine in November 2014 against the virus that can cause cervical cancer. Every year, throughout the world, some 266,000 women die from this type of cancer, more than 85 per cent of them in poor countries where preventive medical care and treatment are practically non-existent.

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Protecting more women against cervical cancer
Vaccination against human papilloma virus

Agatha, Norrine, Nancy and Ellen go to the same class at the St. Dorcas boarding school near Moshi. In November 2014 the four girls were given the second dose of HPV vaccine against a virus that can cause cervical cancer. Agatha's mother died from the disease only five months after being diagnosed.

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Reaching the remotest areas
Visiting patients by motorbike

Vaccines can only protect people that receive them. The goal is to reach and immunise every child – independent of where it may live or whether it has a fixed home. Doctor Samuel Selestine Ammo and his colleague travel by motorbike to provide vaccinations in rural Tanzania, immunising for instance the children of the nomadic Maasai people. It takes a well-working health system to ensure all children can get the immunisation they need.

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