Pivoting from VMMC to COVID-19

As South Africa went into a coronavirus lockdown in March, non-emergency procedures such as voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) were stopped. Many of the organisations providing VMMC services began supporting COVID-19 screening and testing, and their teams quickly saw a need to apply lessons from their HIV prevention experience. In a comment published by Bhekisisa, the head of one of those organisations writes that “time-tested lessons … about building community trust and battling misinformation are just as important in today’s COVID-19 response as they have been to us in the HIV field for the past two decades” (Bhekisisa, 22 June 2020).