Men’s health the main topic

2017-04-27 06:02
Monwabisi Qoqa addresses attendants during the Male Health Awareness Programme at the Luvuyo Clinic in Makhaza on Thursday. PHOTO: MandLa Mahashe

Monwabisi Qoqa addresses attendants during the Male Health Awareness Programme at the Luvuyo Clinic in Makhaza on Thursday. PHOTO: MandLa Mahashe

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The Luvuyo Clinic in Makhaza is hoping to encourage men to be in the driving seat of health issues.

This is why the clinic established the men’s health forum where local men and organisations will work together to deal with issues.

On Thursday, the clinic held an awareness day, addressing issues relating to manhood, substance abuse, physical abuse, HIV/AIDS and their general welfare.

According to Monwabisi Qoqa, who works at the clinic, men seldom came to the clinic to report issues, because they tend to shy away.

“At the clinic, its always women and children, making us feel out of place. It is for this reason that men never come to the clinic for check ups or in early stages of sickness. With this forum, we want to find a way to encourage men to be active in health issues,” said Qoqa

He said that the services of the forum won’t just end with health issues but also their well-being and substance abuse.

“The clinic only deals with the health but there are other issues that maybe troubling a person so we have roped in the social development department, trade unions, Sanca and other health organisations,” he said.

Sadtu’s Edward Mokgang told of the benefits of Male Medical Circumcision, a contentious issue among Xhosa men.

In Xhosa culture MMC is a total taboo which often leads to social exclusion for the those who are medically circumcised.

“Before this was introduced there was a study done in Orange Farm in Gauteng where circumcised men and uncircumcised me were trailed for three years and it was found that HIV was more prevalent to the men who were not circumcised,” said Mokgang.

He added that there were further findings that circumcision reduced the chances of being infected by HIV by up to 60%.

“With traditional circumcision, sometimes we have what we call partial circumcision which doesn’t help much because there still a high chance of getting infection. It is important that even if a man went to the mountain they can go to the hospital to get a full circumcision. This way we can be able to protect one and fight HIV/AIDS,” said Mokgang.

On the day, while soem of the men seemed to understand this, most seemed a bit cagey about this process. Qoqa said that they would continue with the forum.

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