Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Student Scholarship

Date Written

Summer 2015

Document Type

Project

Course Number

NURS 5330

Course Name

Advanced Pathophysiology

Professor’s Name

John D. Chovan, James R. Cacchillo

Keywords

Human Immunodeficiency Virus, Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome

Subject Categories

Medical Pathology | Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing | Virus Diseases

Abstract

Thirty years ago, the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) was recognized as the cause of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). Since that time, HIV/AIDS continues to be an ongoing problem worldwide. Even with persistent public heath campaigns and advancements in antiretroviral therapy, HIV/AIDS remains a major cause of global morbidity and mortality (Aggleton, Yankah, & Crewe, 2011). Although the annual number of new HIV/AIDS infections has remained stable, the number of people living with HIV/AIDS has continued increased. In the United States alone, the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 1,201,100 people are living with HIV infection, in addition to 168,300 (14%) who are unaware of being infected. In 2013, an estimated 47,352 people were diagnosed with HIV, while an estimated 26,688 people were diagnosed with AIDS (CDC, 2015). HIV/AIDS is disproportionately more common in certain countries and high-risk groups. Homosexual men, bisexual men, and intravenous drug users continue to endure the highest rates of HIV infection. Homosexual men account for about 50% of people living with HIV, and intravenous drug users account for approximately 25% (Castel, Magnus, & Greenberg, 2015). Racially, African American and Latinos account for 45% of new HIV infections. However, globally, the epidemic is the most severe in South Africa. South Africa holds more than half (70%) of the world’s HIV population. Fortunately, since 2010, AIDS-related deaths have decreased steadily due to free drug treatment. But, there has been a rapid increase in new HIV infections in other countries such as: India, China, Central Asia, Eastern Europe, and parts of Russia. In Central Asia and China, the HIV rate as risen 250% over the past 10 years (Moss, 2013). Although HIV/AIDS infection has dropped about 20%, the incidence of infection varies in different parts of the world. The variation in incidences points to flawed public perceptions that the dangers from HIV are declining as a result of treatment and educational programs. Therefore, education and general public awareness are a main focus when it comes to decreasing the rate of HIV/AIDS.

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