According to the director for curative services in the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly, and Children, Dr Dorothy Gwajima, duplication of services by some professional bodies, plus the multiple fees charged, has made doing business in the health sector at times cumbersome.
Many of the private hospital owners have complained that the situation is creating inconveniences for them and derailing further investment in the health sector, Dr Gwajima said.
Speaking yesterday during the annual general meeting of the Association of Private Health Facilities in Tanzania (APHFTA), she said the government is working to merge some of the institutions to make operations easier.
“There have been issues in the regulation of private sector participation in the health sector in Tanzania. We are committed to ensuring good customer care and client satisfaction,” she added.
According to Dr Gwajima, the ministry plans to introduce a star rating system in a bid to raise hospital standards and quality of healthcare services.
She suggested the best way for the private sector to achieve an improvement in healthcare services is by investing in technology.
“We need to work together because the main challenge currently is not money, but coordination between all actors in the sector,” said Dr Gwajima, who was representing the ministry’s permanent secretary Dr Mpoki Ulisubisya at the AGM.
APHFTA chief executive officer Dr Samuel Ogillo acknowledged the presence of several bodies which at times overlap in terms of providing services within the health sector.
APHFTA is the umbrella organization of the self-sustaining private health sector in Tanzania. Dr Ogillo said the association’s main objective is to promote proper regulation in the private health sector, which is key to investment and hence growth of the economy.