The EngenderHealth News Blog
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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Gates foundation funds circumcision

Several media outlets have noted EngenderHealth's participation in the new Male Circumcision Consortium (noted previously), including the News & Observer (quoted below) and First Science.

“Family Health International, a global public health and development organization, has won a five-year, $18.5 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to boost male circumcision in Kenya. The practice is gaining recognition for limiting the spread of HIV/AIDS across Africa. Durham-based FHI will be working with the Kenyan government, the University of Illinois at Chicago and EngenderHealth, a reproductive health organization.”

Read the rest of the article.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Remorseful father fights to stop rape

Several media outlets have covered the personal transformation of Dumisani Rebombo, Senior Program Coordinator for EngenderHealth’s Men As Partners® program in South Africa, most recently the Toronto Star (quoted below) and the Huffington Post.

umisani Rebombo is protective of his daughters. He wants them to be happy and marry men who treat them well. It's a dream most fathers have, but not an easy one to accomplish in South Africa. According to the country's Commission on Gender Equality, a woman is raped every 17 seconds. Rebombo knows this too well. That's why he wants to make sure his daughters don't meet someone like his younger self. "In my youth, my friends and I, we gang-raped a girl in the village where I was growing up," he says.”

Read the rest of the article.

Advancing Male Circumcision to Prevent HIV in Kenya

“Expanding male circumcision services is a great opportunity to engage men to take greater responsibility for HIV prevention. Reaching a population that does not usually access health services, we can maximize chances to educate men about behavior change and the importance of shared sexual decision-making, which would improve health outcomes for both men and women.”
—Feddis Mumba, Country Director, EngenderHealth-Kenya, and Project Director, EngenderHealth–Male Circumcision Consortium

EngenderHealth is pleased to announce that it is partnering with Family Health International and the University of Illinois at Chicago on the Male Circumcision Consortium, which launched November 24 in Kenya. The Consortium will improve and expand access to voluntary medical circumcision services in Kenya as part of an overall strategy to reduce HIV infections in men.

Male circumcision is gaining recognition as an important practice for limiting the spread of HIV across Sub-Saharan Africa. Several studies have shown that being circumcised dramatically reduces a man’s chances of acquiring HIV during sex with a female partner who has the virus. The challenge now is to transform this clinical knowledge into a public health strategy that can save millions of lives.

Working closely with the Kenyan government, the Consortium will focus on Nyanza Province—which has the country’s highest HIV prevalence and low rates of male circumcision. The experience and knowledge the Consortium gains in Kenya will offer positive lessons for similar programs in other countries.

Given the large number of men who are expected to want circumcision and the shortage of skilled health care professionals, EngenderHealth will develop a national training plan to increase the number of medical staff able to provide safe male circumcision services. EngenderHealth will also conduct research to assess the safety, efficacy, and cost of having nonphysicians (e.g., nurses) provide male circumcision, as well as study community outreach models.

The Consortium’s activities complement EngenderHealth’s other work in Nyanza to improve male circumcision services, supported by the APHIA II project.

Read more about the Male Circumcision Consortium.