Some health centres and hospitals in rural parts of Tanzania still face shortages of trained workers and a lack of medical supplies. And distances between these health facilities and rural communities mean they are not always easy to get to.
Mtwara, located in the south of Tanzania, has a population of around 1.3 million people and is known for its very high prevalence of malaria and other tropical diseases such as dengue. Malaria is a constant threat in many African countries and, according to the World Health Organization1, “malaria remains a major killer of children under five years old, taking the life of a child every two minutes”.
Through social investment programmes BG Tanzania2 set aside up to $280,000 to support the government in improving health conditions in the region of Mtwara. Three areas of health care will benefit from these funds: firstly, pre hospital care and the ambulance service; secondly, two emergency rooms for resuscitation care and thirdly, capacity building to manage common medical emergencies, trauma and snake bite management.
The St. Mary`s dispensary now has an upgraded high speed internet connection which will enable the use of telemedicine devices in the future. St Mary’s dispensary, will be serving the population with lifesaving skills and service supported by the latest equipment.
It’s clear that both St. Mary’s Dispensary Management and the Regional Government appreciate the support from BG Tanzania and that this has made a significant contribution to improving health in local communities.
“With the improved health centre, I am sure that my children’s well-being will be well taken care of. I visit the centre often seeking medical care and the well-trained staff have been able to advise me on various health issues that have improved my family’s livelihood.” said a local resident.
 WHO source: WHO http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs094/en/
 BG Tanzania is a wholly owned subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell