Tanzania Site Assessments Refugee Camps

Background: In February and March 2006, a five member team from the American Dental Association (ADA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Health Volunteers Overseas (HVO)/ADA Steering Committee visited Tanzania to assess the need for and feasibility of a volunteer program. The team visit was in response to two requests by Tanzanian authorities:

1) Assistance for dental treatment for Burundian and Congolese refugees living in northwestern Tanzania.
2) Assistance with continuing education for Tanzania’s dental personnel from the Tanzania Dental Association (TDA) and the Faculty of Dentistry, Muhimbili University College of Health Sciences, University of Dar es Salaam, in Dar es Salaam, the capital city.
Oral Health Needs at Refugee Camps: The guidelines of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees does not include dental care. The Tanzania Red Cross Society (TRCS), which provides all health services to refugees, views the lack of adequate dental care as a critical gap because refugees have resided in these camps for up to ten years. They are not allowed to leave the camp except for emergencies.


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