Testimonies and presentations quoting research findings and presented during a fellowship workshop on HIV Prevention Reporting: Increasing Coverage of Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision (VMMC) have indicated that women have a crucial role in increasing the VMMC uptake.
When presenting her testimony to a group of journalists participating in the workshop, Chemingeny Sarah Achiah, from Pokot in Kenya, said she convinced her husband, Julius—who was also present—to undergo the procedure after learning its benefits from her colleagues.
“When we went to draw water, my colleagues whose husbands were circumcised said so many things that make a circumcised man better in bed than one who is not circumcised.
“I wanted to feel such benefits too, so I asked him to do it. He accepted and we both do not regret the decision. It is beneficial to both of us regarding the performance in bed,” she said.
Achiah said some women have influenced others to have their husbands circumcised by laughing at them when they discuss issues in women gatherings.
During field visits to clinics conducting various methods of circumcision on Wednesday, clinicians told of how women have assisted in scaling up VMMC uptake by testifying its benefits including through posters.
One poster at Loco clinic in the city read: “I am glad I encouraged my partner to go for Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision.”
World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and Aids (Unaids) recommended VMMC as a means of HIV prevention after research established that the procedure cuts a man’s chances of contracting HIV by up to 60 percent.
In his presentation on Tuesday titled Voluntary Medical Male Circimcision: Data Based, Client Driven, Centre for Disease Control’s (CDC) Communications Specialist for Centre of Global Health of the Global HIV and Aids Division, Daniel Rutz, said VMMC also benefits women.
He quoted findings of research conducted in the Mara region in Tanzania in 2008 which established that 89 percent of women sampled preferred having sex with a circumcised man to one who was not.
The findings indicated that women found circumcised men to be better sex performers and that their sex is comfortable and less painful, among others.