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Advances in Preventive Medicine
Volume 2013, Article ID 183187, 6 pages
Review Article

An Overview of HIV Prevention Interventions for People Who Inject Drugs in Tanzania

1Division of Health Promotion and Behavioral Sciences, University of Texas School of Public Health, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), 26th Floor, 7000 Fannin Street, Houston, TX 77030, USA
2Department of Psychiatry and Mental Health, Muhimbili National Hospital, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
3Department of Global Health, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98104, USA
4Pangaea Global AIDS Foundation, 472 Ninth Street, Oakland, CA 94607, USA
5Médecins du Monde, P.O. Box 105948, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
6Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, P.O. Box 65466, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Received 18 October 2012; Accepted 18 December 2012

Academic Editor: R. Douglas Bruce

Copyright © 2013 Eric A. Ratliff et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In the past decade, Tanzania has seen a rapid rise in the number of people who inject drugs (PWID), specifically heroin. While the overall HIV prevalence in Tanzania has declined recently to 5.6%, in 2009, the HIV prevalence among PWID remains alarmingly high at 35%. In this paper, we describe how the Tanzania AIDS Prevention Program (TAPP), Médecins du Monde France (MdM-F), and other organisations have been at the forefront of addressing this public health issue in Africa, implementing a wide array of harm reduction interventions including medication-assisted treatment (MAT), needle and syringe programs (NSP), and “sober houses” for residential treatment in the capital, Dar es Salaam, and in Zanzibar. Looking toward the future, we discuss the need to (1) extend existing services and programs to reach more PWID and others at risk for HIV, (2) develop additional programs to strengthen existing programs, and (3) expand activities to include structural interventions to address vulnerabilities that increase HIV risk for all Tanzanians.