PEPFAR Continues To Support Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision As HIV Prevention Measure

The Hill: Government’s commitment to fighting HIV stronger than ever
Lisa J. Nelson, deputy coordinator for program quality at the Office of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator and Health Diplomacy at the Department of State

“…[Voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC)] has the potential to prevent millions of new HIV infections and save millions of lives … For this reason, the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has long prioritized the expansion of VMMC services to reach the people and places at the greatest risk for HIV infection. … [O]ur data demonstrate that by targeting 15- to 24-year-old men — who are at an elevated risk of acquiring HIV and transmitting it to an infected partner — we can increase the impact of every VMMC procedure we support. PEPFAR’s rigorous data analyses also have shown that certain VMMC partners and program sites are more effective and efficient at reaching men and delivering safe, high-quality services. Based on these analyses, we have redirected some VMMC resources to these high-performing partners and sites and only closed sites for poor service delivery or non-performance. … VMMC is a powerful tool toward ending the AIDS epidemic, and PEPFAR’s commitment to accelerating access to VMMC is stronger than ever” (5/31).