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HIV Basic Biology, Epidemiology, and Prevention

INSTITUTION

POLHN

SUBJECT

HIV Basic Biology, Epidemiology, and Prevention

MODULES

08

courses

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) targets immune systems, weakening defence mechanisms and making the human body vulnerable to a host of infections and associated factors. HIV remains a major global public health issue, and according to WHO estimates, the causative factor for more than 35 million deaths so far, with around 1 million deaths occurring in 2016 alone. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), that needs between 2 to 15 years for development, although it varies from one individual to another.

The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) targets immune systems, weakening defence mechanisms and making the human body vulnerable to a host of infections and associated factors. HIV remains a major global public health issue, and according to WHO estimates, the causative factor for more than 35 million deaths so far, with around 1 million deaths occurring in 2016 alone. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), that needs between 2 to 15 years for development, although it varies from one individual to another. The course has been designed to help health workers in developing basic understanding of biology, transmission, epidemiology, and prevention of HIV/AIDS. This course has been adapted from Global Health eLearning (GHeL) Center under creative commons license and modified according to prevailing trends in the Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs).

After completion of this course, the students shall be able to understand:

  •          Biology of the virus
  •          Epidemiology and modes of infection of the virus
  •          Sexual dynamics that increase the risk of acquiring HIV
  •          Additional preventive approaches


Getting Started
The Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) targets immune systems, weakening defence mechanisms and making the human body vulnerable to a host of infections and associated factors. HIV remains a major global public health issue, and according to WHO estimates, the causative factor for more than 35 million deaths so far, with around 1 million deaths occurring in 2016 alone. The most advanced stage of HIV infection is Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), that needs between 2 to 15 years for development, although it varies from one individual to another. The course has been designed to help health workers in developing basic understanding of biology, transmission, epidemiology, and prevention of HIV/AIDS.
Module - 1: Basic Biology
Module 1 details basic structure of the virus, mode of entry, replication and attack of HIV inside the human cell, and four significant attributes of HIV.
Module - 2: Modes of Transmission and Course of Infection
Module 2 discusses the myths behind the spread of HIV, most common modes of infection {sexual transmission, blood, injections, and mother-to-child transmission (MTCT)}, the natural course of HIV infection and AIDS, and the key role that early infection plays.
Module - 3: Epidemiology and Patterns of Infection
Module 3 provides information regarding the key epidemic concepts of incidence and prevalence, the methodology used to measure these two concepts, major global trends, typical pattern of prevalence by age and sex in a generalized epidemic, and locations and situations with higher risk.
Module - 4: Sexual Dynamics
Module 4 explains the dynamics involved in the sexual transmission of HIV (increased number of sexual partners, concurrent sex partners, discordant and concordant couples), transactional sex, and fast- and slow-moving components of epidemics.  
Module - 5: Condoms
Module 5 encompasses the topics including, the significance of correct and consistent use of condoms, efficacy of promotion of condom use among health workers, limited clear impact of widespread condom distribution on overall generalized epidemics, and a case study involving South African youth.
Module - 6: Behavioural Prevention
Module 6 includes case studies based upon decline of HIV incidence in Uganda and Zimbabwe, strategies in promoting safer sexual behaviour, and role of behaviour change programming.
Module - 7: Further Prevention
Module 7 outlines other modes of prevention, such as male circumcision, priorities for voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) programs, treatment of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), role of antiretroviral therapy (ART), and pre-prophylaxis prevention of HIV (PrEP), promise and challenges for ARV-based prevention, and specific interventions and a comprehensive package for key populations, structural factors, combination prevention, and strategic, prioritized programming for prevention.
Module - 8: Strengthening the Services for HIV to Achieve Universal Health Coverage in Vanuatu: A Pacific Perspective
Module 8 is concerned with the HIV prevalence background in Vanuatu. This module includes an example that how Vanuatu Ministry of Health and the WHO Collaborating Centre trained health-care workers in implementing the Vanuatu National Guidelines on the Use of Antiretroviral Drugs for Treating and Preventing HIV Infection.

Pacific Health Security

POLHN has dedicated public health professionals in its DPS research team who have decade long experiences in Health Security and Emergencies, NCDs and Health Through the Life course, and Health System
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Course Questions & Answers

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Yes, this course has recommended and additional readings. These can all be easily accessed on Moodle.
There is no time limit for completing this IPC self-paced course. POLHN recommends spending about 4 hours per week over the period of 6 weeks.
Once you enrol yourself into this course on Moodle you will have access to all the lectures and assignments.
Once you successfully complete your course by completing all the modules and passing all the assessment, your certificate will be automatically generated and sent to your email. You can also access all your certificates through our online certificate verification system here: https://polhn.org/verify. If you are having any problems accessing your certificate, simply email us at support@polhn.org and we will help you.

Study Material

This self-paced course has been designed in a manner that enhances understanding of the core concepts and provides easy to access learning materials. The course uses a range of study material such as pre-recorded videos, lecture slides, quizzes and assignments, and is developed by a team of dedicated health education experts.


Getting Help

Connect with other students through the discussion forum, where you can easily discuss the course or debate the ideas. Need more help? Your instructors are also available online to answer any questions you might have.


Extend Your Career with a Verified Certificate

POLHN self-paced courses are recognised by Pacific Ministries of Health. Once you have successfully completed the course, you will receive an official certificate. This certificate can be used for credit to gain CPD points.

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HIV remains a major global public health issue. This course has been designed to help health workers to develop a basic understanding of the biology, transmission, epidemiology and prevention of HIV/AIDS.

HIV Basic Biology, Epidemiology, and Prevention

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