Hospital circumcision rates are down, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report -- and there doesn't seem to be any clear reason.
The report from the center's weekly report on morbidity and mortality showed that, depending on what numbers you used, hospital circumcision rates from 1999 to 2008 dropped from 62.5% to 56.9% (National Hospital Discharge Survey) or from 63.5% to 56.3% (Nationwide Inpatient Sample). And according to SDIHealth, from 2001 to 2010 the rates dropped from 58.4% to 54.7%.
Anyway, the point is that they're going down. And that's a surprise, given that hospital circumcision rates were on the upswing in the previous decade.
Circumcision, which involves removing the foreskin from the penis, often at birth, has been a standard practice for Jews and Muslims for centuries. It has come into more widespread use as evidence grew that the practice had hygenic and health benefits.