Background: The Estimations and Projections Package (EPP 2005) for HIV/AIDS estimates and projects HIV prevalence, number of people living with HIV and new HIV infections and AIDS cases using antenatal clinic (ANC) surveillance data. The prevalence projection produced by EPP can be transferred to SPECTRUM, a demographic projection model, to calculate the number of AIDS deaths. This paper presents estimates and projections of HIV prevalence, new cases of HIV infections and AIDS deaths in Tanzania between 2001 and 2010 using the EPP 2005 and SPECTRUM soft-wares on ANC data.
Methods: For this study we used; the 1985-2004 ANC data set, the 2005 UN population estimates for urban and rural adults, which is based on the 2002 population census, and results of the 2003 Tanzania HIV Indicator Survey. The ANC surveillance sites were categorized into urban and rural areas on the basis of the standard national definitions of urban and rural areas, which led to 40 urban and 35 rural clinic sites. The rural and urban epidemics were run independently by fitting the model to all data and on level fits.
Results: The national HIV prevalence increased from 0% in 1981 to a peak of 8.1% in 1995, and gradually decreased to 6.5% in 2004 which stabilized until 2010. The urban HIV epidemic increased from 0% in 1981 peaking at 12.6% in 1992 and leveled to between 10.9% and 11.8% from 2003 to 2010. The rural epidemic peaked in 1995 at 7.0% and gradually declined to 5.2% in 2004, and then stabilized at between 5.1% and 5.3% from 2005 to 2010. New infections are projected to rise steadily, resulting in 250,000 new cases in 2010. Deaths due to AIDS started in 1985 and rose steadily to reach 120,000 deaths in 2010, with more females dying than men.
Conclusion: The fact that the number of new infections is projected to increase steadily to reach 250,000 per year in 2010 calls for more concerted efforts to combat the spread of HIV infection particularly in the rural areas where the infrastructure needed for prevention programmes such as counseling and testing, condom accessibility and AIDS information is less developed.