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NY Board of Health votes in favor of ‘parental consent’ for ‘child circumcision ritual’ by rabbis

Washington, Sep 14 (ANI): The New York Board of Health has voted unanimously in favor of parental or guardian consent before any male baby undergoes a ritual circumcision performed by a rabbi or mohel that involves oral suction.

The move came after at least 11 infants in New York are believed to have contracted herpes from the practice, two of whom have died and two of whom have had irreversible brain damage.

During the ritual, called Metzitzah b’Peh, a Mohel removes the foreskin from the baby’s penis and uses his mouth to stop the bleeding.

Earlier, rabbis in New York had claimed that if a proposed law requiring parental consent for a circumcision ritual were enacted, they would defy it.

The Department of Health had argued that parents should be informed of the risks before making a decision, as since 2004, it has received “multiple complaints from parents who were not aware that direct oral suction was going to be performed as part of their sons’ circumcisions,” according to a public notice.

The law now which would require mohels to explain the oral suction procedure and its risks, including the possible transmission of herpes simplex virus, and have parents sign a waiver. (ANI)