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Thursday, April 02, 2009

Condom, is a condom, is a condom

Response to Papal Comments on Condoms --
By any other name is still a condom
Retrieved by Pat Darnell

Vatican may be less rigid on condom use

The tiniest of cracks may be appearing in Vatican policy on the use of condoms. The Roman Catholic Church has always opposed all forms of contraception and been unwilling to accept the use of condoms to help stop the spread of AIDS.

But a senior Catholic cardinal said over the weekend that exceptions could be made in some cases, for example if one partner within a marriage is infected with the HIV virus.

The Vatican will shortly release a document about the use of condoms for people infected with diseases like AIDS. Last weekend, the Vatican minister for public health, Cardinal Javier Lozano Barragan, told Italian newspaper La Repubblica that he is working on a report about this matter at the request of the pope. This would appear to indicate a climbdown by the Vatican from its policy of sexual abstinence as the only acceptable form of prevention.

No liberal --
Pope Ratzinger is certainly no more liberal than his predecessor. But while John Paul II listened mainly to himself, his successor is much more open to debate. This also means, however, that he will listen to the advice of other Catholic cardinals, such as the chairman of the Papal council for the family, Lopez Trujillo, who maintains that the use of condoms contributes to the spread of HIV, because it gives a 'false feeling of security'.

Therefore, it's not yet certain whether the Vatican really will change its stance, but it is clear that this particular pontiff is prepared to take another look at issues which his predecessor regarded as taboo.
(Aart Heering and Louise Dunne 24-04-2006)

Do medical and governmental groups support condoms use
as an effective way to prevent HIV?

As a piece of contraceptive technology, all agree that when used correctly, the condom is remarkably effective.

Between 1990 and 2002, nearly $700 million worth of condoms were purchased for donations to nations struggling with population growth and/or sexually transmitted diseases. Quality evaluation typically took place at the time of contracting and again with product delivery. Tests include air burst integrity, tensile strength and electronic pinhole seal measures. The products perform at exceedingly high levels.

Condoms are also extremely easy to use, do not require medical supervision, can be distributed effectively, and don’t cost very much. In fact, unit cost of a non-U.S. produced condom is only 3 cents. That’s an important consideration since it was estimated that in the year 2000, some 8 billion condoms should have been available for free distribution in Eastern Europe and the developing world of HIV/AIDS. Donors provided just 950 million that year.

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