Six babies are said to have been infected with infant herpes in New York City since Mayor Bill de Blasio cut a deal with the Hasidic community that continues to allow ritual circumcisers mouth-to-genital contact.
The news emerged Thursday after a newborn was rushed to the hospital two weeks after undergoing the procedure, known as metzitzah b’peh, in which the mohel sucks the blood out of the circumcision wound using his mouth.
The Health Department under former Mayor Michael Bloomberg cracked down on the practice due to hygienic concerns, with his administration requiring parents to sign a waiver before the procedure.
De Blasio, who derives a large base of support from the Hasidic community, rolled back that policy, setting instead for a compromise in which the community was supposed to help test circumcisers from herpes and prevent those infect from oral-genital contact with infants.
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