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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Risk factor or social vaccine? The historical progression of the role of education in HIV and AIDS infection in sub-Saharan Africa

    Numerous epidemiological studies from the early years of the tragic HIV and AIDS pandemic in sub-Saharan Africa identified formal education as a risk factor increasing the chance of infection. Instead of playing its usual role as a preventative factor, as has been noted in many other public health cases, until the mid-1990s educated African men and women had a higher risk of contracting HIV than their less educated peers. This led to ambivalent policy about the efficacy of education as a possible social vaccine against new infections in this region. …

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