Reuters reports on a study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine finding that due to a decline in Medicaid coverage of male circumcision (MC) in the US, fewer babies may be circumcised and that may lead to increases in healthcare costs due to higher rates of urinary tract infections, HIV, penile cancer, and herpes.
Currently, over half of baby boys are circumcised, but that number is just one in ten in Europe. The study suggests that a drop to a similar level in the US is possible and that such a decline would raise costs so that for every circumcision not done at a savings of about $250 to $300, there would be a net increase of over $300 in other medical costs.
USA Today reports, “Falling infant circumcision rates could end up costing billions of US healthcare dollars when men and their female partners develop AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections and cancers that could have been prevented. Separately, the American Academy of Pediatrics is about to issue a new policy statement that says infant circumcision has ‘significant’ health benefits, replacing a statement that takes a more neutral stance.”
The Los Angeles Times reports, “Declining rates of circumcision among infants will translate into billions of dollars of unnecessary medical costs in the US as these boys grow up and become sexually active men, researchers at Johns Hopkins University warned.”
And, “nearly 80% of the additional projected costs were because of medical care associated with HIV infection in men.”