By Hanning Mbabazi
The Ministry of Health has said that the number of men opting for vasectomies has increased in urban areas compared to rural settings.
This was revealed by Dr. Placid Mihayo the Assistant Commissioner of Reproductive Health at the health ministry who said, the increase in the number of men who carry out vasectomies have been noted mostly in Central and Western Uganda.
In the 2017/2018 financial year, a total of 1235 vasectomies were carried out nationally compared to 1313 men in 2018/2019.
Dr. Milton Awudo, the director of technical services at Marie Stopes Uganda said the number of vasectomies carried out in centers that are run as private facilities are increasing, while those carrying it out during outreach are reducing.
According to Dr. Awudo, in 2017 and 2018 they experienced an increase of 5 percent in the number of men who opted for the family planning method. This however said is happening at a time when the overall number of men carrying out vasectomies is reducing.
He added that most men in rural areas look at family planning as the responsibility of women. He said this coupled with myths and the stigma surrounding male family planning options leads to low numbers.
Dr. Mihayo said the increase has only been noted in certain parts of the country because men still have myths concerning vasectomy.
In 2017 a total of 455 men were registered compared to 291 in 2018. This year, they have so far only carried out 94 vasectomies.
A vasectomy is a permanent family planning method for men that stops sperms from being injected into semen. During the procedure, male vessels that carry sperms from the testicles are cut and tied so as to prevent sperm from entering into the urethra. This prevents fertilization of a female through sexual intercourse.
Men who have vasectomies are encouraged not to have sexual intercourse for at least three months after the process or to use other family planning methods like condoms because the family planning method is not instant. Men with; abnormalities of the scrotum, severe high blood pressure, infections around the genital areas or who just had babies are not advised to carry out vasectomies.