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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - The message: It's OK to have safe sex

The message: It's OK to have safe sex

Acondom called 'OK' has been introduced to Cambodia in an attempt to promote safer

sex, greater control of reproduction, and to overcome implied mistrust of partners

who use condoms.

Population Services International, a US-based NGO that has been active in Cambodia

since 1993, launched the OK condom brand on April 7, with the same name as the OK

pill and OK injection.

Jacqueline Devine, deputy country representative for PSI, said OK aims to attract

new condom users, normalize condom use and to position condom use as a sign of caring,

particularly in trusting relationships such as married and sweetheart couples.

PSI last year conducted Cambodia's first HIV/AIDS Knowledge Attitude and Practices

general population household study of 3,643 men and women aged 15-49 in five provinces

plus Phnom Penh city.

Nguon Sovann, Products Manager of PSI, said the study found that while knowledge

of HIV/AIDS and sexually transmitted infections was high, some misconceptions remained.

He said nearly 100 per cent of men having sex with sex workers used a condom, but

few used condoms with regular partners and almost none with their spouse. A key reason

people did not use condoms was "trust": 87 percent of the study sample

said suggesting condom use insinuated mistrust [of the female's health]."

Married and sweetheart couples had a higher level of HIV/AIDS infection than sex

workers.

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