AUSTRALIA: AIDS org says circumcision “has no role” in Australian context

The Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations has issued a briefing paper (pdf) with the telling headline, “Male circumcision has no role in the Australian AIDS epidemic.”

Among the key points are:

  • There is no demonstrated benefit of circumcision in men who have sex with men.
  • Correct and consistent condom use, not circumcision, is the most effective means of reducing female-to-male transmission, and vice-versa.
  • African data on circumcision is context-specific and cannot be extrapolated to the Australian epidemic in any way.

The first point is a reiteration of a recent study from Sydney that showed circumcision provided no protection for gay men. The second point is clear from the statements and caveats issued from the circumcision studies organizers themselves. The third point is clear from the key contextual attribute of all three studies, that the protective effect is in heterosexual couples in only one direction.

A high impact, succinctly written poster presentation given at this year’s International AIDS Society Conference is available below, and is worth printing in color for outreach activities.

Cutting It Fine – Bridget Haire

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