Availability of HIV/AIDS community intervention programmes and quality of services in and around selected mining sites in Tanzania
Background: Mining is one of the major sectors of the country’s economy as it employs and attracts a large number of people from different areas. As a result, mining sites are at great risk of HIV transmission. While a few unsynchronized mine-specific population-based studies provide evidence of a growing HIV problem in this sector, virtually few evidence exists on availability and quality of interventions targeting HIV and AIDS in this population. The study was conducted to assess the availability and quality of HIV/AIDS intervention programmes in and around mining sites in Tanzania.
Methods: This cross sectional study was conducted from November 2012 to April 2013. Both quantitative and qualitative methods were used to collect data. Study areas involved both mining sites and its surrounding communities in Kahama, Nzega and Geita Districts. It involved household members from villages in and around the mining sites, mining community relations officers, community health facility workers, district HIV/AIDS focal persons and village leaders.
Results: A total of 463 individuals were recruited into the study for household interviews. In-depth interviews with Key Informants involved 15 respondents. HIV/AIDS intervention programmes in the study area were available despite that knowledge of their existence was limited to a segment of the community. Their availability was only known to about 25% of the study respondents in Geita and Kahama study sites. The programmes carried out intervention activities which included HIV/AIDS education campaigns, promoting uptake of voluntary counselling and testing services, promoting and supporting condom use, safer sex, and male circumcision. HIV/AIDS services such as screening, distribution of condoms and ARVs for infected people were available and were offered free of charge.
Conclusion: Our findings show that HIV/AIDS intervention programmes were available despite that they were unequally distributed. Although their availability has contributed to the decrease of HIV prevalence in the community, knowledge of their availability was limited to some people in the community.