IPPF and Durex join forces to raise awareness of Zika as an STI

Global #DontShareZika campaign launched to spread the message with an educational video and condom giveaway.

 As the global focus shifts to Brazil, the world’s leading sexual wellbeing brand Durex and the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) have joined forces to launch #DontShareZika, a global campaign to raise awareness of the Zika virus, educate about its status as a sexually transmitted infection (STI) and provide direct support by handing out millions of free condoms.

The move follows the update by the World Health Organization (WHO), confirming that in addition to being spread by infected mosquitoes, Zika* can also be transmitted sexually. This means that everyone - including people in a monogamous relationship - may be at risk from the STI if they, or their partner, have visited an affected area and been bitten by an infected mosquito. As an STI, the Zika virus has the potential to travel and spread between people who may not even realise they are infected. In response, Durex have created the #DontShareZika video to educate that the Zika virus can be passed between couples during unprotected sex, and committed to a giveaway of three million free condoms in Brazil.

WHO recommends that men and women returning from an area where Zika is circulating should practice safer sex, including through the correct and consistent use of condoms, for at least eight weeks after leaving an affected area, even if they don’t have symptoms. At a time when Brazil is expecting as many as a million extra visitors from across the globe, the #DontShareZika campaign aims to spread this important message as widely as possible to limit the risk of further infections.

#DontShareZika follows recent work by Durex lobbying for the world’s first safe sex emoji** designed to help young people discuss safe sex. Both initiatives are part of Durex’s continuous efforts for better sexual health and education globally. “As the world’s number one sexual wellbeing brand we have a responsibility to make people aware of this STI, to help people to stay healthy and to prevent the sexual transmission of the virus.” commented the Global Director ofRB the brand, Volker Sydow.

IPPF Director General Tewodros Melesse, added; “Our aim is to ensure all people have access to sexual and reproductive health information and services. At the moment, many people still don’t realise that Zika can be transmitted sexually. Communicating this and enabling people to protect themselves and their partners is critical, so we welcome #DontShareZika and Durex’s free condom giveaway in Brazil.”

Durex are calling for people to support the campaign and help share a message of protection and prevention faster than this STI, Zika, can be spread, by sharing the informative video and using the hashtag #DontShareZika. Follow @Durex for more information.

For more information on the Zika virus visit: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/zika/en/.

-ENDS-

For further information please contact Amy Williams: amy.williams@premiercomms.com/ 0207 292 5084 or Toby Leston: toby.leston@premiercomms.com/ 0207 2929 6451

Notes to Editors

* Zika virus is linked to microcephaly - a condition where babies are born with brain damage and undeveloped heads.

** www.youtube.com/watch?v=O7iKgKpkWfU

About Durex

Durex® is the #1 sexual wellbeing brand worldwide. The brand not only produces condoms that exceeds global testing standards, but also offers pleasure gels, lubricants and personal massagers.

With over 80 years of experience in the bedroom, Durex is dedicated to inspiring lovers to love sex safely. That is why Durex will never stop innovating with new products that enhance the sexual experience, helping couples get closer and go further together. For more information, go to www.Durex.com.

About RB* RB is the world’s leading consumer health and hygiene company. The company has operations in over 60 countries, with headquarters in London, Dubai and Amsterdam, and sales in most countries across the globe. The company employs approximately c. 37,000 people worldwide.

Inspired by a purpose to deliver innovative solutions for healthier lives and happier homes, RB is in the top 20 companies listed on the London Stock Exchange. We are the global No 1or No 2 in the majority of our fast-growing categories, driven by an exceptional focus on innovation. Our health, hygiene and home portfolio is led by our global Powerbrands including Nurofen, Strepsils Gaviscon, Mucinex, Durex, Scholl, Clearasil, Lysol, Dettol, Veet, Harpic, Cillit Bang, Mortein, Finish, Vanish, Calgon, Air Wick, Woolite and French’s. Our Powerbrands represent 80% of net revenue.

RB is redefining the world of consumer health and hygiene. Our people and unique culture are at the heart of our success. We have a drive for achievement and a passion to outperform wherever we focus, including sustainability where we are targeting a 1/3 reduction in water impact, 1/3 reduction in carbon and 1/3 of net revenue from more sustainable products. We are proud to be Save the Children’s largest global partner, with a new vision to radically reduce one the world’s largest killer of under 5s, diarrhea.

For more information visit www.rb.com.

*RB is the trading name of Reckitt Benckiser group of companies

About IPPF

IPPF delivers sexual and reproductive health services that let people make their own choices. We fight for everyone to have the right to make those choices. We are local, through our members and volunteers, and global, through our network.

We meet need, wherever it is, whoever requires it, for as long as they want it.