AIDS Conference to Promote Fc2 Use

Posted on June 19, 2013  |  Related Issues: Family Planning

IOL SciTech, June 19, 2013--The female condom, known as the Fc2, will be among the many awareness issues that will be discussed at the 6th South African Aids Conference in Durban this week.

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the conference at the Chief Albert Luthuli International Conference Centre (ICC) that beganon Tuesday.

The conference will close on Friday.

Tian Johnson advocacy consultant for support for a division of the The Female Health Company, said they would be working towards promoting the use of female condoms.

He said despite the government spending a lot of money on Fc2, the organisation believed not enough awareness was created to promote its use.

Johnson said the female condom had been around for 10 years, but there were still many women who did not know it existed.

He said the condoms were the only product that women could use to protect themselves from HIV and that men were now undergoing circumcision to reduce infection.

“What is amazing about the female condom is that it can be worn even three hours before.

“If a woman knows she may end up in a situation where she cannot initiate safe sex, she will still be protected,” he explained.

Johnson said they wanted to create as much awareness about the female condom as possible during the conference.

He said the condom was available on request at government clinics and hospitals, but the organisation wanted Fc2 to be made available at public places just as the male condom is.

Advantage

“Another advantage about the female condom is that it can also be used by males. We will be doing demonstrations and presentations during the conference,” he said.

Meanwhile in KwaZulu-Natal, HIV prevalence was declining.

This was according to a statement by KZN Health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo during his 2013/2014 budget speech last Wednesday.

“Since we took office in 2009, we have stabilised HIV prevalence in our province from 39.5 percent to 37.4 percent,” he said.

Dhlomo said this was because of the KZN Health Department’s integrated approach through the Provincial Council on Aids and working together with the public and private sector to ensure initiatives on prevention and antiretroviral treatment were successful.

For the current financial year, Dhlomo said the department was planning to distribute 212 million male and 2.8 million female condoms as part of its prevention strategy.

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