500 infants circumcised in government programme

THE Health and Child Care ministry has circumcised at least 500 infants in a pilot programme which started last year designed for young children before they become sexually active.

BY FELUAN NLEYA
STAFF REPORTER

The ministry was working together with the Population Services International (PSI) on the programme.

PSI director for voluntary medical male circumcision Ngonidzashe Madidi said for the purposes of sustainability, they were studying the early infant male circumcision (EIMC) to ensure protective effect of male circumcision is sustained.

Madidi said they wanted EIMC to run parallel with the adult Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision (VMMC) programme.

“Currently, EIMC is in a study phase and we are happy to say we managed to circumcise at least 560 babies successfully,” Madidi said.

“The first training to do implementation was done in December 2012 and that saw at least 50 babies being successfully circumcised by doctors.”

Madidi said there was also a programme to train midwives to be able to circumcise infants as they were the first to make contact with babies.

The programme has so far been introduced at Edith Operman and Mabvuku clinics in Harare.

“The programme by the midwives saw them successfully circumcising 331 infants using the AccuCirc device,” Madidi said.

Madidi said they planned to scale up the programme after the pilot phrase and would be guided by the ministry in implementing it.

He said EIMC protected the infant from future infections such as HIV and bladder infections by 98% and 82% respectively.

The World Health Organisation recommends neo-natal circumcision should be a component of prevention campaigns since it is less complicated than circumcision performed in young boys, adolescents or adults.

27 Responses to 500 infants circumcised in government programme

  1. James April 15, 2014 at 6:52 am #

    This reads like something out of a nightmare. Those poor kids.

  2. mveredzembwa April 15, 2014 at 7:03 am #

    kwanai,ko mwana iyeye kana akura akati dzoserai nzvonyo yangu munozoidzosera here?

  3. GOJO April 15, 2014 at 8:31 am #

    this is being only done in african countries, tel me anywhere in europe or usa where its being done, purely experimental on poor kids of africa, shame

  4. stondido April 15, 2014 at 9:18 am #

    no fair at all…iwewe yako wakamanikidzwa kuchecheudzwa here…?

  5. kitsi April 15, 2014 at 9:28 am #

    They should be careful and not be short-sighted in their actions, in 20 years time things would have changed and some people might sue the government over this issue as it violates the “voluntary” clause and maybe ethical issues in dealing with human subjects.

  6. Rururur April 15, 2014 at 9:29 am #

    So disheartening! sure carrying out studies nevana wevamwe……..ko zvikazoonekwa kuti zvonetsa mberi vozodii??? ko ivo ma parents evana ava arikumbopiwa chiiko kutadza kuona kuti varikukandanisirwa vana??? To those with this culture of circum…i know vanozoenda wava majaha yava kutomira, kwete tucheche. Maiweeeeee, vabereki ngwarai, aaaahhh musangobvumira zvese-zvese

  7. Ethical April 15, 2014 at 9:40 am #

    I am real saddened by this operation on non-consenting minors.
    Maybe I am the only one who is out touch with reality but surely you can not remove any part of the body, skin included if it is not done for medical purposes, from these minors.

    It is only plausible and ethical too, to wait until thes kids are grown up and allow them to make an iformed decision about circumcision. As an adult I am not comfortable with any operation that removes a portion of my body. So why force it on the minors who in future may not be comfortable with that loss of the fore skin.

    I agree with Mveredzembwa’s comment above. When are Zimbabweans going to be real free? I am not going to make such decision for my boys. I will leave it to them. I hpe this is not going to be legalised resulting in all male children being forced to undergo the operation soon after birth, the same way ypou remove the umblical cord

    • tealrose1 April 15, 2014 at 11:48 pm #

      I am sad and appalled that such lies are being perpetuated in Zimbabwe – and that tiny baby boys are the ones paying for them with the loss of their foreskins !! They are there for a reason – and removing them does NOT stop the spread of HIV or anything else. It’s a purely cosmetic operation and should be banned not encouraged !!

      In the UK we have never had this cruel and barbaric practice – it was only brought into vogue in the USA by Mr Kellogg no less, who thought that masturbation was disgusting and ungodly and thought up the idea of circumcision to stop that ! Our men are not suffering huge amounts of infections or HIV, they don’t all need adult circumcisions and they can all keep themselves clean !!

      So many boys grow up into men and have problems with their hardened and nude glans, that rubs against clothing etc, their women have problems having a good sexual experience as the men can’t ‘glide’ inside them as they would with a foreskin and this results in the men thrusting harder which can hurt both the women and the men. The men lose about 16,000 to 20,000 nerve endings when circumcised – so their sensitivity is greatly reduced.

      This is a crime … a real sad crime. And you will see HIV continue to soar … without teaching your young men to use condoms.

  8. Rebecca April 15, 2014 at 10:13 am #

    Snip those foreskins!

    • Hugh7 April 16, 2014 at 2:20 am #

      * With a Gomco, Winkelman or Mogen Clamp, or a traditional barzel, it’s sliced – and a Mogen may slice more than just the foreskin, which has led to successful claims worth millions and the Mogen company going out of business.
      * With a Plastibell or PrePex it’s crushed and allowed to die (14/15 men circumcised with a PrePex complained of pain, and the smell of rotting foreskin was also an issue).
      * With an Accu-circ it’s chopped.
      – but never “snipped”.

  9. gutsie April 15, 2014 at 10:22 am #

    Learned as we claim to be as a nation, I am really appalled at the level we are made guinea pigs. Experimenting with human beings, defenceless infants for that matter! I have googled extensively about this subject of male circumcision and believe you me I have not found anything conclusive re: the benefits. Let us not be fooled because of our poverty and unfortunate situation as Africans. This article is also empty in itself. What is the objective of the EXPERIMENT? I read in third paragraph that “to ensure protective effect of male circumcision is sustained” but i did not understand what it meant. Like others have raised why not wait for the children to reach the age of consent? Consent by a parent is not consent by the child, the two are wide apart.

  10. Kache Mhofu April 15, 2014 at 11:38 am #

    Catch them young! Maybe they need the foreskins as input material in cosmetics production!!

    • Kache Muchamaya April 15, 2014 at 12:20 pm #

      Yu can say that again Mhofu. This is really barbaric, my young brothers were butchered kumusha uko after vanyeperwa kunzi yu will become lyk Winky Dee. They have resorted to moving around in schools kumamisha vachitsvetera vapfanha. Anamhomz vakangosainiswawo ko vaizivei?

  11. Hugh x April 15, 2014 at 1:52 pm #

    There is no evidence whatsoever that infant circumcision has any effect on HIV transmission. The claims of protection are based on trials with adult volunteers, and there are many problems with them. In the real world, circumcision has not been shown to protect anyone from anything.

  12. Marilyn Milos, RN April 15, 2014 at 3:34 pm #

    The circumcision experiment was tried in the USA, where a half a million circumcised men died of AIDS and are buried six feet under. The USA has high rates of sexually transmitted diseases, babies still get UTIs, which are treated effectively with antibiotics, and it has the same penile cancer rates as those in Scandinavian countries where boys are kept intact. This was an unethical and unconscionable experiment in the USA and it is in Africa, too. Education, not amputation, is key in protecting against sexually transmitted diseases. Circumcision is where sex and violence meet for the first time. It won’t be the last either, for, as Menninger said, “What we do to children, they will do to society.” And, Gandhi said, “If we are ever to have real peace, we must begin with the children.” Circumcision is NOT a medical issue, it is a human rights issue!

  13. Ronald Goldman, Ph.D. April 15, 2014 at 4:34 pm #

    Here is what they do not tell you. Studies show that circumcision causes significant pain and trauma, behavioral and neurological changes in infants, potential parental stress from persistent crying (colic) of infants, disrupted bonding between parent and child, and risk of surgical complications. Other consequences of circumcision include loss of a natural, healthy, functioning body part, reduced sexual pleasure, potential psychological problems, and unknown negative effects that have not been studied.

    Some circumcised men resent that they are circumcised. Sexual anxieties, reduced emotional expression, low self-esteem, avoidance of intimacy, and depression are also reported. Some doctors refuse to perform circumcisions because of ethical reasons. Relying on presumed authorities (e.g., American Academy of Pediatrics or doctors who echo AAP views) is not sufficient because of personal, religious, financial, and political conflicts of interest. For more information see http://www.circumcision.org.

  14. Adam April 15, 2014 at 7:08 pm #

    It’s not really voluntary, when the person is too young to consent, is it?

  15. Joseph4GI April 15, 2014 at 9:20 pm #

    Precisely how does circumcising children prevent HIV transmission? Are they having sex? Whatever happened to circumcision being “voluntary?” This is the most despicable article I’ve read.

    Facts and figures show that circumcision does not prevent anything. In the United States, where the money for circumcision in Africa comes from, 80% of males have been circumcised from birth. And yet, according to the CIA factbook, the United States has a higher HIV prevalence rate than 53 countries where circumcision is rare (e.g. below 20%). So how is something that has never worked in a first world country like the US, going to suddenly start working miracles in Africa?

    If circumcision works so well, why are men still urged to wear condoms? This is a human rights tragedy. Sooner or later the circumcision/HIV is coming down, and these articles will be looked back upon in shame.

    SHAME on people bragging about forcibly mutilating small, innocent who aren’t even at risk for sexually transmitted disease.

    SHAME.

  16. Hugh7 April 16, 2014 at 2:36 am #

    “The World Health Organisation recommends neo-natal circumcision should be a component of prevention campaigns since it is less complicated than circumcision performed in young boys, adolescents or adults.”

    It isn’t. On the contrary, any tiny mistake on a baby is magnified on the man he becomes. The real reason they are doing this is that men are not buying it, so they are getting them before they can resist.

  17. Hugh7 April 16, 2014 at 2:39 am #

    Zimbabwe is one of the 10 out of 18 countries (for which USAID has figures) where more of the circumcised men have HIV than the non-circumcised. They did the survey twice in Zimbabwe, with the same outcome both times. Zimbabwe’s health system is in crisis. The money could be much better spent on enabling babies to reach adulthood.

  18. Informed April 16, 2014 at 2:41 am #

    Circumcision is the American insanity that some are trying to export to the world just as rates of infant circumcision are falling here. The cutters, virtually all of whom are cut themselves, need more cutting to affirm their own circumcisions. It is a vicious cycle that one sees in all cutting cultures. Zimbabweans would do well to beware of Americans bearing “gifts.” Remember that the normal foreskin is there to protect the sensitive glans, which becomes less sensitive once it is exposed. The foreskin also is the most sensitive part of the penis and gives its owner and partner great pleasure during sexual activity. (See http://www.cirp.org). Condoms, being faithful, and abstinence are the only real ways to prevent HIV that is sexually acquired (not all HIV is gotten through sex). Circumcising babies is nothing short of criminal.

  19. Ron Low April 16, 2014 at 7:26 am #

    Genital cutting is NOT a medical procedure when there is no diagnosis of defect or disease, nor any record of less-destructive remedies tried.

    Circumcision alters sex dramatically.

    Informed adults can decide for themselves.

  20. Owino Qane April 16, 2014 at 4:27 pm #

    And if it is, it behooves all of us to start speaking out against the genital mutilation of children.Both boys and girls.
    Belief that the foreskin is needed. Some people feel the foreskin is needed to protect the tip of the penis…

    Some people “feel” the eyelids are needed to protect the eyes. Do they mean dried out eyeballs aren’t normal, and eyelid removal isn’t an option because society thinks it looks better?

    Belief it can affect sex. Some feel that circumcision makes the tip of the penis less sensitive, causing a decrease in sexual pleasure later in life.

    A “belief” that removing colour rods can affect vision. Some feel that cutting off the thumb decreases dexterity. Are these not facts?

  21. Mark Lyndon April 16, 2014 at 4:54 pm #

    Zimbabwean men are *more* likely to have HIV if they’ve been circumcised:

    12.5% of intact Zimbabwean men have HIV
    14.6% of circumcised Zimbabwean men have HIV

    (figures from a Measure Demographic and Health Survey)

    There are at least nine other African countries where men are *more* likely to be HIV+ if they’ve been circumcised. Why then is male circumcision being promoted to prevent HIV?

    Europeans don’t circumcise, South Americans don’t circumcise, Australians and New Zealanders used to circumcise but stopped, most North Americans don’t circumcise. Why should Africans circumcise?

  22. J. Douglas April 24, 2014 at 4:28 am #

    Please see the following link for brief summary (with linked references) of the ethical, legal and methodological flaws with past research informing the present campaign of circumcision-as-HIV-preventative in Africa, some of the adverse consequences of funding circumcision-as-HIV-preventative in Africa (coercion of men and boys to be circumcised; misdirection of limited medical resources from higher priority areas) and the absence of oversight of organisations promoting and facilitating male circumcision in Africa:

    http://www.academia.edu/5453317/Response_to_PEPFAR_Program_Expenditures_Form_Number_DS-4213_OMB_Control_Number_1405-0208_-_Revision_3

  23. Knut Holt April 24, 2014 at 4:45 pm #

    Circumsission gives a lot of trouble later in life, like loss of senistivity and often a deformed and scarred penis, a tight skin that will not allow the penis to get properly erect, plus circumcission has accute risks too, like infection, fatal bleeding and a penis destroyed by a botched process, so the practice must be regarded as abuse. And not least: It is more difficult to masturbate a circumcized penis than one intact, and that is perhaps a hidden agenda behind this enterprize.

  24. AngelXY April 28, 2014 at 11:40 pm #

    They forget to mention that the guy who invented the Accucirc device is also the WHO chief expert on circumcision. Obvious conflict of interest. He is going to be a very rich man if he keeps on misleading and exploiting people in Africa.

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