On June 22, 2011, the Male Circumcision Technical Working Group for the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) launched a short video on voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) for HIV prevention called, In It to Save Lives: Scaling Up Voluntary Medical Male Circumcision for HIV Prevention for Maximum Public Health Impact.
In this 15-minute film, award-winning filmmaker Lisa Russell tells the story of how governments in Kenya and Swaziland have embraced VMMC for HIV prevention to turn the tide of the epidemic in their countries.
Produced by AIDSTAR-One, the film features interviews with a variety of experts, policymakers, and implementers and shows that VMMC programs can be replicated and expanded to reach the critical mass needed for maximum public health impact.
The launch, held at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, provided updates from technical experts from USAID, CDC, Department of Defense, and OGAC. A question and answer session followed the film, prompting a robust conversation between the audience and representatives from the United Nations Joint Programme on HIV/AIDS, the World Health Organization, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Ministries of Health of Swaziland, Botswana, and South Africa, as well as experts from across the US Government.
Through videoconferencing hosted by the World Bank, participants from Kenya, Swaziland, and South Africa were able to join in the event.