There has been an expansion of circumcision services in Africa as part of a long-term HIV prevention strategy. However, the effect of infant male circumcision on morbidity and mortality still remains unclear. Acute morbidities associated with circumcision include pain, bleeding, swelling, infection, tetanus or inadequate skin removal. Scale-up of circumcision services could lead to a rise in these associated morbidities that could have significant impact on health service delivery and the safety of infants. Multidisciplinary training programmes have been developed to improve skills of health service providers, but very little is known about the effectiveness of health service provider education and/or training for infant male circumcision on short- and long-term morbidity outcomes. This review aims to evaluate the effectiveness of health service provider education and/or training for infant male circumcision on short- and long-term morbidity outcomes.
The review will include studies comparing health service providers who have received education and/or training to improve their skills for infant male circumcision with those who have not received education and/or training. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and cluster RCTs will be included. The outcomes of interest are short-term morbidities of the male infant including pain, infection, tetanus, bleeding, excess skin removal, glans amputation and fistula. Long-term morbidities include urinary tract infection (UTI), HIV infection and abnormalities of urination. Databases such as MEDLINE (OVID), PsycINFO (OVID), EMBASE (OVID), CINAHL, Cochrane Library (including CENTRAL and DARE), WHO databases and reference list of papers will be searched for relevant articles. Study selection, data extraction and synthesis and risk of bias assessment using the Cochrane risk of bias assessment tool will be conducted. We will calculate the pooled estimates of the difference in means and risk ratios using random effects models. If insufficient data are available, we will present results descriptively.
This review appears to be the first to be conducted in this area. The findings will have important implications for infant male circumcision programmes and policy.
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