When it comes to saving lives threatened by the AIDS epidemic - there is no time to lose!
Therefore, we are happy to share with you the rapid progress some countries have been making lately in scale-up of their national Male Circumcision programs – using PrePex!
South Africa Moving Towards PrePex Scale-Up of VMMC
Following WHO pre-qualification of the PrePex device and its advocacy for use, South Africa is rapidly advancing towards the completion of a PrePex Passive Surveillance phase. According to Mr. Dayanund Loykissoonlal — Manager of the Medical Male Circumcision Program at the National Department of Health — South Africa is planning a PrePex roll-out as a means of rapid scale-up of medical male circumcision in order to meet the country’s ambitious circumcision target- to circumcise 4.3 Million Men.
PrePex advocates with PrePex Product Specialist, Danny, in North West Province, South Africa. March 2015.
Zimbabwe initiates PrePex Adolescent Active Surveillance Study
In Zimbabwe, Population Services International (PSI) has initiated a PrePex Active Surveillance Study of adolescents aged 13-17 years, at three different sites, with the aim of reaching 1,000 PrePex procedures. The organization is planning to run a PrePex campaign for adolescents during November.
Last month, the Ministry of Health and Child Care, PSI and the National Aids Council organized a voluntary HIV Testing, Counseling and Medical Circumcision Program with PrePex at Chachacha Growth Point, Shurugwi.
PrePex was launched in Zimbabwe earlier this year as "The Ring" and responses among the public were very positive towards the device; According to Shingi Makaure (program coordinator), PrePex gained ground in areas where men were reluctant to undergo surgical circumcision. Furthermore Malvern Nyamana – the chief medical officer in Shurugwi rural district, said PrePex has made a big difference: "We are seeing that a lot of certain section of population were not quite keen on coming for circumcision, especially young adults and older men ranging from 18 around 29 are now willing to come because of this method which saves time – they want to come in and go. With no injections and less hassles, they continue their daily business as usual," said Nyamana.
PrePex Active Surveillance Phase to begin in Kenya!
The National AIDS and STDs Control Program (NASCOP) — run by the Kenya Ministry of Health — has initiated the PrePex Active AEs Surveillance phase. In its plan to circumcise at least 1,000 men with use of the PrePex device, the activity is supported by PEPFAR/CDC in collaboration with six implementing NGOs.
The Ministry's national Male Circumcision Strategy for 2015-2019 sets a new target – namely, to reach 95% MC national coverage in males aged 15-49 years by 2019. From the current 92%, this will mean more than 1 million procedures!
PrePex is now offered at the Babadogo Catholic Center in Eastern Nairobi, Kenya! Meet the PrePex Implementers of the Eastern Dispensary AIDS Relief Project (EDARP) (from left to right): Faith Mwang (site team leader), Samuel Kwanya (PrePex provider), Simon Warioko (PrePex provider), Steve Kegol (Prevention manager, EDARP) and Jack Munene (HTC counselor). Eastern Nairobi, Kenya; June2015.
Malawi Moving forward to Active Surveillance Phase
The Ministry of Health, Malawi has discussed the PrePex National Safety and Acceptability Study and approved moving into the active surveillance phase, following debriefing on the preliminary findings earlier this month. The Ministry's senior management was debriefed by Dr. Frank Chmbwandira, Director of the HIV and AIDS Department. The study was conducted during 2014 at Lilongwe, Nsanje District Hospital, and Mulanje District by I-Tech, MSF and BLM, respectively and was supported by CDC. The study, which included some 800 males, showed very good results regarding the Safety and Acceptability of PrePex among clients and providers, alike.
Zambia Moving Forward with PrePex
Zambia’s Community Development Mother and Child and the Ministry of Health progressing towards implementation of PrePex as part of its national VMMC program which aims to reach a target of 2.4m male circumcisions, by 2017. In September, Alon Gilboa (PrePex Regional Manager) co-facilitated a round-table meeting in Lusaka — together with officials from the Ministry of Community Development, Mother and Child (MCDMCH) Health, the Ministry of Health, CDC, Jhpiego, BMGF, CHAI, ZDF and DoD. More information regarding the national program will be published in the near future.
PrePex Regional Manager, Alon, presenting PrePex regional updates to attendees at the round-table meeting. Lusaka, Zambia; September 2015.
Dr. James Zulu (VMMC coordinator at MCDMCH) presenting the VMMC program and ways forward with PrePex implementation at the round-table meeting. Lusaka, Zambia; September 2105.
Dr. Patrick Odawo (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation) presenting the draft results of the IPSOS Study on Devices Forecast in Zambia at the round-table meeting.
The draft results (undergoing refinement) were based on 2014 data and showed that in Zambia, the use of PrePex will create incremental demand by up to 41%, dependent on the age group.
A similar study was conducted in Zimbabwe earlier this year, the draft results of which indicate an increase in incremental demand by up to 45%. Lusaka, Zambia; September 2105.
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