Skip to content

    Sexual Conditions Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Bill Gates Offers $100,000 for Next-Gen Condom

    By
    WebMD Health News
    Reviewed by Rob Hicks, MD

    March 25, 2013 -- The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is offering a $100,000 grant to anyone who can develop what's being called the next generation of condom.

    The aim is to help curb unwanted pregnancies and the spread of sexually transmitted infections around the world.

    The Condom of the Future

    The foundation's Grand Challenges in Global Health initiative says it is looking for the next-generation condom that "significantly preserves or enhances pleasure, in order to improve uptake and regular use." This could mean safe, new materials to "preserve or enhance sensation." Most condoms are made of latex.

    Other important features include making male and female condoms easier to use (perhaps with better packaging or easy-to-use designs) and attributes that "address and overcome cultural barriers."

    Condom designers will have to work hard to get their grant money. Plans need to have a concept that can be thoroughly tested and validated. Test data will need to give clear results before moving on to further testing.

    Condom Facts

    About 15 billion condoms are made every year and used by about 750 million people.

    If used correctly, male condoms are 98% effective against pregnancy. Condoms also help protect both partners from sexually transmitted infections, such as HIV, chlamydia, and gonorrhea.

    Female condoms, put inside the vagina before sex, are 95% effective if used correctly.

    Condom use has been traced back to ancient Egypt and even cave paintings in France.

    Although condoms have been in use for centuries, Gates says there have not been many advances in condom technology in the last 50 years.

    Today on WebMD

    couple kissing
    See pictures and get the facts.
    husband taking prescription painkillers
    13 things that can kill your sex drive.
     
    close up of cold sore
    How to stop them from spreading.
    Condom Quiz
    What are the symptoms?
     

    HIV Myth Facts
    Slideshow
    STD Overview
    Slideshow
     
    Man tearing a condom packet
    Quiz
    things your guy wish you knew slideshow
    Slideshow
     

    Thoughtful man sitting on bed
    Quiz
    Girls Puberty 10
    Quiz
     
    Couple in bed
    Article
    Young couple holding hands
    Quiz