SBC Works! Partnership with HelpAge International to promote vaccine equity and access for older people in Tanzania

Success stories from Eastern and Southern Africa


The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed real gaps in data on older people and a lack of prioritization of OP in traditional immunization systems, making it more difficult to include them in the response. The Government of Tanzania set an ambitious goal of reaching 70 percent of COVID-19 vaccination by June 2022. Achieving this goal required overcoming significant challenges. In addition to addressing barriers to access, the Government of Tanzania and UNICEF Tanzania prioritized interventions to increase demand for vaccination amongst those most at risk, including older people.

HelpAge International has the unique mandate of working with older people and a pre-existing strong relationship with the Government and communities at the national and local levels. Therefore, UNICEF decided to partner with HelpAge International to engage older people and promote community-led COVID-19 prevention and vaccination. Initially starting with 2 regions of Mwanza and Kigoma in November 2021, UNICEF has extended coverage to 5 more regions (Simiyu, Njombe, Tanga, Kagera and Shinyanga) by September 2022.

April 2023

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