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Gates looks to get a rise out of the traditional condom industry

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates is offering quite a challenge to brilliant minds everywhere: create a condom that men prefer to use over no condom. 

On Gates' "Impatient Optimists" website for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a blog post describes how condoms are effective at preventing the spread of HIV and unintended pregnancy, but most people don't want to use them. Why? Mainly because it hinders the sexual experience. 

The blog post was written by Papa Salif Sow, a senior program officer in HIV Prevention at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Stephen Ward, a program officer for Discovery & Translational Sciences at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. 

"It may seem obvious, but the success and impact of any public health tool hinges on that tool being used consistently and correctly by those who need it," said the blog post. "Vaccines sitting on shelves don’t prevent disease.  New tuberculosis drug regimens won’t help if patients stop taking them halfway through the necessary days.  Likewise, the potential value of condoms is limited by inconsistent use."

It mentions that many other HIV preventative and contraceptive methods are in development, such as fast-dissolving vaginal films and combination vaginal rings. However, many of these alternatives are years from hitting store shelves either due to development issues, regulatory approval, etc.

We have a perfectly good solution already available: condoms. But Gates feels it is time to give the condom a much-needed update so that they're used more frequently. 

"What if we could develop a condom that would provide all the benefit of our current versions, without the drawbacks?" said the blog post. "Even better, what if we could develop one that was preferred to no condom?"

 The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is challenging scientists, entrepreneurs, etc. to partake in the Next Generation of Condoms, which is part of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Grand Challenges Explorations. 

Gates' Grand Challenges are always looking for an old idea to redesign and make into a more effective product. For example, last August, Gates awarded prizes to three teams at an event in Seattle, Washington called "Reinvent the Toilet Challenge." Scientists, inventors, designers and students enrolled in the challenge were asked that they create a toilet design that strays from the traditional flush toilet. 

If you've got an idea that will encourage "wrapping" it while making men still want to "tap" it, then submit your ideas to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation here.

Source: Impatient Optimists

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RE: How about you start by...
By Reclaimer77 on 3/25/2013 4:58:14 PM , Rating: 5
The declaration of independence states that all citizens have the unalienable right to life.

Then I demand all food products be free. Why do we draw the line at health care exactly? I can go a whole year or more without needing to see a doctor. But I damn sure need to eat every day, why should I have to pay for that? I have a RIGHT TO LIFE!

Contraceptives can save lives and often times are not even used to prevent pregnancy.

That's not the issue here. You're using a bunch of emotional hyperbole instead of sticking to the facts. Nobody is against contraceptives here. We just don't think others should have to pay for yours!

If we lived in your dogmatic world that medication wouldn't be covered by our insurance, which we pay for. And for no damn reason at all really.

What? No, that's ridiculous. Are you retarded? Nobody is trying to take away your stupid birth control pills covered by insurance!! What the hell? This is about Obama trying to force the Catholic church health plan to cover them. You obviously don't have insurance through the church soooo - connect the dots here - THIS DOES NOT AFFECT YOU!!

If there were an islamic organization prohibiting women from holding positions we wouldn't and shouldn't tolerate it.

That violates her civil rights as well as is being prejudiced against. That's not even close to being the same thing here. You don't have an "unalienable" right to free condoms and pills lol. Get out of here kid

RE: How about you start by...
By TSS on 3/26/2013 11:00:10 AM , Rating: 1
What the church covers under it's health plan has no bearing on your beliefs either. It's a monetary issue. Wether or not the church offers contraceptives for free, against payment or not at all - this does not prevent you from refusing to use them.

If anything you could see it as a test of your faith. Are you saying you need to have contraceptives banned from the church or otherwise you couldn't resist the temptation of using them? That's a faith question which relates to you, and thus is constitutionally protected. Nobody can prevent you from asking this question or exploring it's options. But it still does not have bearing on wether the church actually offers them or not, it has bearing on you being able to handle the church offering them or not. And you should really talk to your lord about that one.

Anyways that's not really why i wanted to respond. This is why:
Then I demand all food products be free. Why do we draw the line at health care exactly? I can go a whole year or more without needing to see a doctor. But I damn sure need to eat every day, why should I have to pay for that? I have a RIGHT TO LIFE!

That might very well be *The* most sensible thing you've ever said on this entire website. Even if it was in jest....

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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