India To Increase Condom Vending Machines Fivefold as Part of HIV Prevention Campaign
India's National AIDS Control Organization plans to increase the number of condom vending machines in the country by fivefold under the third phase of the country's National AIDS Control Program, which is scheduled to be launched in April, IBNlive.com reports. According to an unnamed NACO official, the organization is planning to increase the number of condom distribution outlets from 600,000 to three million and is planning to increase the number of distributed condoms from 1.6 billion to 3.5 billion over the next three years. According to the official, the total budget for condom distribution efforts under NACP's third phase will be about $4.5 billion over five years, and $67 million will be allocated for such efforts this year. He added that 75% of the third phase's budget is earmarked for prevention programs, including condom promotion, targeted interventions and blood safety initiatives. Condom distribution efforts will be targeted at both urban and rural areas, with priority given to areas with high HIV prevalence and fertility rates, the official said, adding that the general population will be targeted as well. The increase in the number of outlets will ensure that condoms are more widely accessible, the official said. He added that NACO plans to launch an intensive promotional campaign on condom use in a few months (IBNlive.com, 3/8).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.