Vasectomies offered free in Counties Manukau

Last updated 17:49 23/05/2014

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Counties Manukau Health is giving men the chance to get "the snip" for free. 

It started offering free vasectomies on May 9, as part of a pilot aimed at increasing contraception in the area.

Counties Manukau Health communications manager Lauren Young said a range of free contraceptive and sterilisation options were already being offered for women and by providing vasectomies it was able to offer a full range so that families can choose what suits them best.

"This pilot - which at this stage will run until September - will assess what the demand is for vasectomies in Counties Manukau and it will be evaluated before future decisions are made."

Vasectomies normally cost between $395 and $500.

The pilot was partially aimed at finding out if cost was a major inhibitor to men getting vasectomies, she said.

"This will see if men in our district wish to have a vasectomy.

"We have heard many rumours about why men choose not to have a vasectomy - including cost, cultural, social and religious - so by offering some free vasectomies we hope to find out if cost is the main barrier."

All men receiving a free vasectomy would be asked to complete a questionnaire asking what the barriers were for them, she said.

Men from outside the area will not be able to utilise the pilot.

To be eligible, a man has to be a Counties Manukau resident, eligible for fully funded healthcare, and be "sure his family is complete".

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