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Estimating the hypothetical dual health impact and cost-effectiveness of the Woman’s Condom in selected sub-Saharan African countries

Authors Mvundura M, Nundy N, Kilbourne-Brook M, Coffey P

Received 27 September 2014

Accepted for publication 1 December 2014

Published 5 March 2015 Volume 2015:7 Pages 271—277


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Elie Al-Chaer

Mercy Mvundura, Neeti Nundy, Maggie Kilbourne-Brook, Patricia S Coffey

Technology Solutions Global Program, PATH, Seattle, WA, USA

Background: Female condoms are the only currently available woman-initiated option that offers dual protection from pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. The Woman’s Condom is a new female condom designed to provide dual protection and to be highly pleasurable and acceptable.
Objective: We sought to estimate the potential dual health impact and cost-effectiveness of a Woman’s Condom distribution program in 13 sub-Saharan African countries with HIV prevalence rates >4% among adults aged 15–49 years. We used two separate, publicly available models for this analysis, the Impact 2 model developed by Marie Stopes International and the Population Services International disability-adjusted life years (DALY) calculator program. We estimated the potential numbers of pregnancies and DALYs averted when the Woman’s Condom is used as a family planning method and the HIV infections and DALYs averted when it is used as an HIV prevention method.
Results: Programming 100,000 Woman’s Condoms in each of 13 countries in sub-Saharan Africa during a 1-year period could potentially prevent 194 pregnancies and an average of 21 HIV infections in each country. When using the World Health Organization CHOosing Interventions that are Cost-Effective (WHO-CHOICE) criteria as a threshold to infer the potential cost-effectiveness of the Woman’s Condom, we found that the Woman’s Condom would be considered cost-effective.
Conclusion: This was a first and successful attempt to estimate the impact of dual protection of female condoms. The health impact is greater for the use of the Woman’s Condom as an HIV prevention method than for contraception. Dual use of the Woman’s Condom increases the overall health impact. The Woman’s Condom was found to be very cost-effective in all 13 countries in our sample.

Keywords: female condoms, unintended pregnancy, HIV prevention, contraception, sub-Saharan Africa, cost-effectiveness

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