Design-Build of Manica, Tete, and Sofala HIV Viral Load Laboratories


Demand for HIV viral load (VL) testing in Mozambique outweighs current capacity. The increasing demand results in backlogs of VL samples throughout the country- this problem will become more acute as demand continues to grow. Backlogs of VL samples result in long delays in the delivery of VL test results to clinicians and patients, negatively impacting patient care.  These delays also slow the expansion of differentiated models of care, specifically 3-month drug distribution and rapid patient flow, interventions known to greatly increase retention in HIV care. Thus, it is imperative that the current HIV VL testing network be expanded as quickly as possible.

The current Mozambique VL expansion plan establishes laboratory spaces in three USAID-supported provinces:  Manica, Tete and Sofala.  Sites in Chimoio & Tete City will hold up to three VL testing machines each, greatly increasing the VL testing capacity in the region.  Renovations on a new lab space in Beira will also be completed to support testing in Sofala.  All HIV Viral Load samples from Manica and Tete provinces are currently sent to the Health HIV laboratory in Sofala province, pending completion of the Manica and Tete laboratories.


USAID will implement the rehabilitation and renovations of the Tete, Manica and Sofala laboratories through a Design-Build mechanism.  USAID will upgrade the current prefab lab installed in Chimoio(Manica province), to meet the HIV Viral Load lab standards. For the Tete and Sofala Labs, USAID determined that the most timely, cost-effective, and sustainable approach is to renovate existing spaces, rather than installing prefabricated structures. In this endeavor, USAID will take into account the international standards for the nature of the facilities. The activity implementation will include – but not be limited to – the design, construction, testing, material, labor, and equipment to perform the services at the locations described above.  Awards were made to local construction companies in each province to carry out the rehabilitation work while oversight of the firms will be provided by Maputo based A&E firm, HaskoningDVH.


By mid-2019, the additional capacity provided by the new labs will support enhanced performance across the national laboratory network.  Improved access to timely and accurate VL testing for providers means improved care and treatment for high risk HIV positive patients.

Last updated: February 27, 2020

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