Study: Fe­male con­dom pro­gram likely saved $6M

The Washington Times Daily - - Metro -

An ef­fort by the Dis­trict to in­crease the use of fe­male con­doms, the lesser-known equiv­a­lent of the male con­dom, likely pre­vented 23 new HIV in­fec­tions and saved tax­pay­ers $6 mil­lion in its first year, ac­cord­ing to a new study.

The study, con­ducted by the Johns Hop­kins Bloomberg School of Public Health and the D.C. Depart­ment of Health, was pub­lished on­line last week in the sci­en­tific jour­nal AIDS and Be­hav­ior. It says tax­pay­ers saved mil­lions of dol­lars be­cause 3 out of ev­ery 4 Hiv-pos­i­tive per­sons re­ceiv­ing treat­ment are get­ting health care through tax­payer-funded pro­grams such as Med­i­caid. The study was paid for by the Fe­male Health Co., maker of the fe­male con­dom.

The re­searchers’ cal­cu­la­tions used such fac­tors as the preva­lence of HIV and the rates of sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted in­fec­tions in the Dis­trict. The cost anal­y­sis also used a health depart­ment es­ti­mate that about twothirds of the con­doms were used dur­ing sex.

The re­searchers noted that a ran­dom­ized trial would be a bet­ter way to mea­sure the pro­gram’s im­pact, but such a study would be too ex­pen­sive and re­quire a large num­ber of par­tic­i­pants.

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