World Bank funds Malawi to carry male circumssision

The World Bank has agreed to fund Malawi’s voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) programme to the tune of MK6 billion (about US$15million) for the next four years, the Ministry of Health announced Friday.

Ministry spokesperson Henry Chimbali said the funding would enable the Malawian government to roll-out the programme in remaining districts.

Medical male circumcision as part of its HIV prevention strategy
Medical male circumcision as part of its HIV prevention strategy

“We have been unable to expand the service to other districts due to inadequate resources to train service providers, formulation of communication messages and purchase of supplies therefore the funding will help fill this gap,” he said.

He said the ministry would take the VMMC programme to the districts of Nkhotakota and Lilongwe in Central Region and Blantyre, Phalombe and Zomba in Southern Region, targeting 45,000 adult males aged 15 to 49 years.

He said VMMC was one of the HIV and AIDS interventions in the country. It reduces chances of contracting the virus by up to 60 percent.

VMMC also has other benefits such as hygiene and helps a man from developing cancer, he said.

The World Health Organisation recommended the inclusion of male circumcision for countries with generalised HIV epidemics like Malawi in their national HIV prevention strategy.

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