A comparative study of medical, religious, and traditional practitioners on practices and perceptions of male circumcision in Bushbuckridge Area, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa
South African Government adopted a voluntary medical male circumcision as a prevention strategy to address the high rate of HIV infection. Presently three distinct approaches are practised in South Africa.The purpose of the study is to compare the medical, religious, and traditional male circumcisions in terms of practice and perceptions.Explorative qualitative research was adopted. Purposive sampling was used. Semi-structured interviews were conducted to collect data. Data was analysed through open coding and results were compared and triangulated. Three approaches used had similar physical procedures, but different perceptions on reasons for performance. Medical practitioner conducted male circumcision for health reasons, a religious leader viewed it as an act of faith, and traditional healer upheld it for cultural identity and rite of passage to manhood.
It was recommended that government and relevant stakeholders hold negotiations with traditional leaders and communities to ease their fear of cultural extinction and loss of independence.
Keywords: Cultural extinction, male medical circumcision, social identity, warrior symptoms