Through an equipment grant from the IBM International Foundation, the Communications for Better Health® (CBH® ) program in Tanzania began at the Muhimbili Medical Center Library at the University of Dar es Salaam. Under the leadership of Mr. Cecil Magembe, the Tanzania Health Information Digest (THID) was launched in 1994 and produced and distributed to health care providers on mainland Tanzania, Zanzibar, and the Pemba Islands. The program also makes use of WHO’s Blue Trunk Library project to distribute the digest to rural districts in Tanzania. Database literature searches and full-text delivery of articles to digest readers are also program components.
The Tanzania Health Information Digest contains information in English and Kiswahili. Digest readers help determine the content in each issue through their literature search requests. Articles address health issues such as anemia, children’s health, dysentery, family planning, gastrointestinal disorders, HIV/AIDS, hypertension, leprosy, malaria, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs/STIs), tetanus, and tuberculosis. The digest also contains relevant local health information that is collected and processed as part of the African Index Medicus (AIM) project.