Expanding safer sex options: introducing the female condom into national programmes.

Abstract:

:Although the female condom has been introduced into over 90 countries since 1997, it has only been accepted in sexual and reproductive health programmes as a mainstream method in a few. This paper describes introductory strategies developed by Ministries of Health and non-governmental organisations in Brazil, Ghana, Zimbabwe and South Africa, supported by UNAIDS, and the manufacturers of the female condom, which have significantly expanded the number of female condoms being used. These projects have several key similarities: a focus on training for providers and peer educators, face-to-face communication with potential users to equip them with information and skills, an identified target audience, a consistent supply, a long assessment period to gauge actual use beyond the initial novelty phase, and a mix of public and private sector distribution. Female condom programmes require the sanction, leadership and funding of governments and donors. However, the non-governmental and private sectors have also played a major role in programme implementation. To ensure successful introduction of the female condom, it is crucial to involve a range of decision-makers, programme managers, service providers, community leaders and women's and youth groups. The rising cost of inaction and unprotected sex in the spread of HIV and AIDS force us to recognise the high cost of not providing female condoms alongside male condoms in family planning and AIDS prevention programmes.

journal_name

Reprod Health Matters

authors

Warren M,Philpott A

doi

10.1016/s0968-8080(03)02178-5

subject

Has Abstract

pub_date

2003-05-01 00:00:00

pages

130-9

issue

21

eissn

0968-8080

issn

1460-9576

journal_volume

11

pub_type

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