Members of Parliament to present policy suggestions to curb TB and HIV in Zimbabwe, following visit to at-risk communities

The Union partnered with the National AIDS Council, the National Tuberculosis Control Programme and other stakeholders to bring 46 local Members of Parliament (MPs) on a fact-finding tour to the midlands province in Zimbabwe. The MPs are all members of the portfolio committee on health and child care and their visit aimed to observe the effectiveness of existing tuberculosis (TB) and HIV interventions and what changes could be made to improve health services in the country. 

The four-day tour focused on at-risk communities and included visits to mines and mining communities, elderly communities, prisons and educational facilities, as well as hospitals, clinics and other healthcare facilities. Members of Parliament held discussion sessions with recipients of the Ministry of Health and Child Care’s TB and HIV services and heard feedback about their experiences. 

Following the visits, MPs and other stakeholders met to discuss their observations and consolidate their advice into recommendations for concrete policy improvements and action. Suggested improvements included ensuring miners have protective gear to reduce TB and other lung diseases, improving and decentralising health services in rural healthcare facilities and prioritising elderly healthcare. These recommendations will be presented in the House of Assembly for debate. 

The Union Zimbabwe Office has an ongoing relationship with local policy-makers, who, together with Union staff, advocate for better and more comprehensive TB and HIV services. The Union’s work in Zimbabwe is funded through the United States Agency for International Development’s Challenge TB programme.