Indian J Sex Transm Dis Indian J Sex Transm Dis
Official Publication of the Indian Association for the Study of Sexually Transmitted Disesses
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LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2010  |  Volume : 31  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 55
 

Control of STIs and HIV: The male reproductive and sexual health context - The paradigms


Department of Community Medicine, G.S.L. Medical College, NH 5, Lakshmipuram, Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh - 533 296, India

Date of Web Publication3-Sep-2010

Correspondence Address:
Karun Dev Sharma
Department of Community Medicine, G.S.L. Medical College, NH 5, Lakshmipuram, Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh - 533 296
India
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DOI: 10.4103/0253-7184.69006

PMID: 21808441

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How to cite this article:
Sharma KD. Control of STIs and HIV: The male reproductive and sexual health context - The paradigms. Indian J Sex Transm Dis 2010;31:55

How to cite this URL:
Sharma KD. Control of STIs and HIV: The male reproductive and sexual health context - The paradigms. Indian J Sex Transm Dis [serial online] 2010 [cited 2014 Oct 24];31:55. Available from: http://www.ijstd.org/text.asp?2010/31/1/55/69006


Sir,

The concern about male reproductive and sexual health and, concomitantly, the health of their sexual partners is set in the context of rapid spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and increasing rate of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) in India. In the context of HIV prevention, a reduction in the prevalence of other STIs can help in decreasing the rate of transmission of HIV.

In the present scenario, men, in general, do not feel comfortable seeking services from family planning clinics and young people, in particular, often feel embarrassed. [1] Men's reproductive health needs include a wide range of services such as family planning, treatment and prevention of STI/HIV, infertility, sexual problems and others. Men need clinics and staff that provide confidential and non-judgmental care. [2] Also, to increase the male participation in reproductive and sexual health, the primary focus should be on strategies to "encourage and enable men to take responsibility for their sexual and reproductive behavior and their social and familial roles." The time is now ripe to determine and address men's sexual health needs if they are expected to participate fully as responsible partners in improving and protecting their own and their partner's sexual and reproductive health. [3]

Under the Research and Intervention in Sexual Health: Theory to Action (RISHTA) project at the International Institute for Population Sciences, a male health clinic was established in one of the three experimental communities. RISHTA interventions successfully demonstrated the strategies of effective community health education programmes and also the efficacy of engaging Ayurveda, Unani, Siddha , Homeopathy and Allopathic providers in HIV/STI risk reduction among men. [4] PROFAMILIA in Colombia offers men their own all-male clinic located in a different building from the regular clinics, and also has found the number of male clients increasing at its regular clinics when staffs are trained to be sensitive to men's unique needs. [1] In rural Bangladesh, reproductive health services for men were successfully integrated into formerly female-focused services without compromising the quality of care. The addition of services for men increased utilization of clinical services by both men and women. [5] The Talking about Reproductive and Sexual Health Issues telephone helpline based in New Delhi receives the majority of its calls from young men. On subsequent calls, male clients reported delaying penetrative sex, masturbating instead of visiting a commercial sex worker and adopting other less risky sexual practice. [1]

The choice of the paradigm in a community will depend on the pattern of utilization of health services by males, type of services already existing and the resources available. The exclusive male health clinic model poses a challenge of intensive resource requirement for establishment and maintenance. Being in the era of integrated health programmes, a similar model shall thus be a practicable choice.

 
   References Top

1.Green , Reaching Young Men with Reproductive Health Programs, Available from: http://www.fhi.org/en/Youth/YouthNet/Publications/FOCUS/InFOCUS/youngmen.htm . [last cited on 2009 Mar 14].   Back to cited text no. 1      
2.Men′s Reproductive Health Needs,Available from: http://www.dshs.state.tx.us/famplan/mi.shtm . [last cited on 2009 Mar 5].   Back to cited text no. 2      
3.Hawkes S. Hart G, Men′s sexual health matters: Promoting reproductive health in an international context. Trop Med Int Health 2000;5:A37-44.   Back to cited text no. 3  [PUBMED]  [FULLTEXT]  
4.Sekher Tv, Stephen S, Male Sexual Concerns and Prevention of HIV/STIs: RISHTA Approach, International Institute for Population Sciences, Research Brief Series. 2009;7:1,4. Available from: http://www.iipsindia.org/pub/Research%20Brief%20.pdf [last cited on 2009 Mar 11].   Back to cited text no. 4      
5.Bangladesh Male Involvement, OR Summary 47,Offering Reproductive Health Services for Men Improves Clinic Utilization Available from: http://www.popcouncil.org/pdfs/frontiers/orsummaries/ors47.pdf . [last cited on 2009 Mar 2].  Back to cited text no. 5      




 

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