28 December 2012

Tanzania: More Males Circumcise in Kagera

Bukoba — IN an effort to reduce new HIV infections more than 25,000 men and boys underwent circumcision in Kagera Region between 2009 to October, this year, a Senior Official with the International Centre for Aids Prevention (ICAP) Dr Song'oro Biki, has disclosed.

Dr Biki told the 'Daily News' that Kagera Region had also reduced the HIV infection rate from the national level of 5.7 per cent to 3.7 per cent, largely due to the awareness campaign.

He noted that a total of 12,597 males underwent the 'cut' between October, 2010 and September, 2011 while 12,471 others underwent circumcision in Kagera Region between October, 2011 and October, this year.

"The response was quite promising as more people were showing up voluntarily for the cut. It is not true that people in Kagera Region dislike being circumcised. More people including youths accept the ritual. There are a few people who spread unfounded rumours that circumcision is unchristian", he said.

Dr Biki said the service was being provided at Bukoba Regional hospital and Rubya hospital, in Muleba district, adding that plans were underway to provide the service at Maruku and Izimbya Wards, in Bukoba Rural district as well.

He further elaborated that ICAP, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare had extended male circumcision services to over 15 Islands in the Lake Victoria Archipelago. The services include Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMCT) and availability of ARVs.

He said the target group was adults aged 25 years old and above adding that the response in rural areas was good compared to urban areas.

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