Remove the MBS benefit for circumcision of a male under six months of age
  • Petitioned The Hon Tanya Plibersek MP

This petition was delivered to:

Minister for Health
The Hon Tanya Plibersek MP

Remove the MBS benefit for circumcision of a male under six months of age

    1. Colin Thornby
    2. Petition by

      Colin Thornby

      Korumburra, Australia

Routine neonatal circumcision of males is not supported by peak Australian medical bodies, including the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (Division of Paediatrics and Child Health) (RACP). The RACP position paper stated that:


After reviewing the currently available evidence, the RACP believes that the frequency of diseases modifiable by circumcision, the level of protection offered by circumcision and the complication rates of circumcision do not warrant routine infant circumcision in Australia and New Zealand. However it is reasonable for parents to weigh the benefits and risks of circumcision and to make the decision whether or not to circumcise their sons. (Position paper)

This recommendation is consistent with policies from other peak medical bodies across the world, including the British Medical Association, the Canada Pediatric Society, the Royal College of Surgeons of England and the Royal Dutch Medical Association.

The Australian Safety & Efficacy Register of New Interventional Procedures — Surgical (ASERNIP-S) review of circumcision conducted by the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (ASERNIP-S report 65) found no indications for routine neonatal infant circumcision of males.

These two studies indicate that there are no therapeutic indications for routine neonatal circumcision of males.

Additionally, a recent study by the Tasmanian Law Reform Commission raises many questions about the ethical and legal ramifications of routine neonatal circumcision of males, in the absence of a therapeutic indication.

Given these facts and that the Medicare Benefits Schedule is intended to fund procedures where there is a proven therapeutic need and outcome, the funding of routine neonatal circumcision of males in the absence of therapeutic indication is a poor use of public monies. Parents who wish to circumcise their neonatal sons should bear the full cost of doing so, without support from public funding.

Recent signatures

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    1. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Robert Carveth AUSTRALIA
      • 8 months ago

      Males should have the same right to genital integrity as girls, circumcision is based in a medical lie

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    • Stu Robinson AUSTRALIA
      • 9 months ago

      I believe that forcing such a painful and permanent mutilation upon any child, most of all an infant, for any reason other than absolute medical necessity is repellent and a violation of their rights as a human being. No human being, no matter what their parents' nationality, faith or cultural background is, should have genital modification forced upon them as an infant, but should be allowed to make the decision for themselves - once in their majority - based on their own beliefs, experiences and knowledge instead of at the insistence of a practitioner, family member or spiritual leader. Any reason other than medical necessity (for example, belief system, "hygiene", aesthetics, reduced risk of HIV/STD infection, "looking like Daddy" or any number of others) is no reason at all, and the Medicare system should not provide coverage for circumcision without proven therapeutic need.

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    • Carsten Kjar AUSTRALIA
      • 10 months ago

      No one should have a part of their body removed without their consent at any point in time. It is a healthy part of the body.

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    • Michelle Schnaars NEWARK, DE
      • 11 months ago

      Medical necessity is rare. The myriad of benefits for remaining intact far outweigh a general practice of cutting. These benefits include, but are not limited to, not suffering injury to the penis when circumcision is performed including too much foreskin removal, head of penis being removed, loss of too much blood and loss of life as a result of circumcision injuries, which are common. As an adult, a man and his sexual partners can enjoy better sexual intimacy with more sensitivity because the foreskin is the natural protective covering for the glans, or head, of the penis. It prevents the surface of the glans from becoming thickened and desensitized; and remaining intact is a basic human right, which an adult man may choose if he so wishes, and not suffer the same level of pain an infant or child would.

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    • Kraft Baisden BULAN, KY
      • 11 months ago

      There is no benefit to circumcision and any claims that there are is medical malpractice.

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