Heightened awareness of the effectiveness of condoms in preventing the sexual transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has led to a 42% increase in worldwide production of male condoms over the last 4 years. However, women still face difficulties in convincing their partners to use this form of protection. The potential role of the female condom in acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) prevention was addressed at a meeting co-sponsored by USAID and AIDSCAP and attended by 45 experts. The Reality female condom offers women the possibility of controlling their own protection from both pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) such as HIV. When used correctly, the female condom reduces the STD risk by 97%. The 6-month pregnancy rate during typical use has been estimated at 12% in the US and 22% in Latin America. Acceptability studies have found that 50-95% of participants liked using the female condom; 60% of women believed it would be easier to use the female condom than to suggest use of a male condom. A major obstacle to global distribution of the female condom is its high price: the best public sector price exceeds US$0.88. On the other hand, demand has the potential to lower the price.