Frequently Asked Questions
The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends male circumcision as a means of reducing female-to-male HIV transmission by 50–60%. However, the supporting trials have been criticised on account of methodological flaws. When accounting for the immunological features of the foreskin and the politics involved in WHO’s recommendation, a more complex picture emerges than what is commonly presented.Real-world data do not support the claim that circumcision reduces HIV prevalence or incidence. USAID statistics found the opposite at the start of VMMC roll-out, with the available national Demographic and Health Surveys showing no significant difference (see Garenne, 2008). However, the false security provided to circumcised men and their partners is a leading source of new HIV infections today. As long as VMMC remains an HIV-preventive policy, HIV rates will continue to rise.
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