The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infects cells of the human immune system, destroying or impairing their function. In the early stages of infection, no symptoms are apparent. However, as the infection progresses the immune system becomes weaker, and the patient becomes more susceptible to opportunistic infections such as Kaposi’s sarcoma or tuberculosis (TB). As many as 13% of new TB cases are also infected with HIV (WHO factsheet 2011).
The most advanced stage of HIV infection is called acquired immunodeficiency syndrome(AIDS). It can take 10–15 years for an HIV-infected person to develop AIDS; antiretroviral drugs can slow this process down even further.
HIV is transmitted through unprotected sexual intercourse, transfusion of infected blood, sharing of contaminated needles, and mother-to-infant transmission during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding.
According to WHO and UNAIDS estimates, 34.2 million people were living with HIV at the end of 2011. That same year, some 2.5 million people became newly infected, and 1.5 million died of AIDS-related causes. Of these deaths, 230,000 were children.
More than two-thirds of HIV infections are in sub-Saharan Africa.
Though there is no known cure for HIV, antiretroviral treatment can substantially prolong patients’ lives. Standard antiretroviral therapy (ART) consists of the use of at least three antiretroviral drugs to suppress the HIV virus and stop the progression of the disease.
There are various methods of reducing the rate of HIV transmission, such as education on preventative methods and distributing and promoting condom use. This can be applied both to the general public and to specific groups such as sex workers.
We have been unable to find estimates of cost-effectiveness from the websites of charities that focus on HIV/AIDS. The DCP2 and WHO-CHOICE cost-effectiveness estimates are as follows:
In other words, according to these reports, it would cost $1000 to extend one HIV-sufferer's life for two years through antiretroviral therapy.  But the same $1000 could add a total of around 950 years of life to a population if spent on mass media HIV/AIDS education.
The cost-effectiveness estimate for mass media education from WHO-CHOICE is the most favourable we have come across. However, we are unsure how much confidence to place in this figure: while it is plausible that mass media education could be an extremely cost-effective intervention, there is at least some countervailing evidence.
Peer support education for high risk groups is also extremely impressive, but it too should be treated as only a rough estimate.
Positive side-effects of the treatment and prevention of HIV/AIDS include:
A decrease in the incidence and transmission of other diseases, such as TB.
Prevention strategies for HIV/AIDS can also help to prevent other sexually transmitted diseases.
Reducing the prevalence of HIV/AIDS has far-reaching socioeconomic benefits.
Education appears to be the most effective way to reduce the number of people who will suffer and die from HIV/AIDS. While we can't place a great deal of confidence in the WHO-CHOICE figures, if these are correct to within even an order of magnitude then peer education programmes for sex workers and, especially, mass media education, are hugely cost-effective.
Unfortunately, we have been unable so far to find charities that focus on or dedicate a significant amount of their resources to mass media education or education of high-risk groups. We therefore currently have no recommended charities for HIV/AIDS.
- WHO summary of HIV/AIDS.
- WHO online Q&A on HIV/AIDS.
- Using a figure of $500 per DALY, with a disability weight for HIV of 0.135.
- Using a figure of $1.25 per DALY, with a disability weight for HIV of 0.135.
- Jane Bertand et al. , 2006. 'Systematic review of the effectiveness of mass communication programs to change HIV/AIDS related behaviours in developing countries', Health Education Research 21:567–97.
Last updated: in or before 2012
Media has a powerful role to play in educating the world. It was years ago, that Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, the disease now recognized all over the world as AIDS, was first detected and recorded in Asia. Over the past two decades, the infection rate has grown rapidly in Asia, which is now second number to Africa in the number of HIV positive people. In Pakistan, HIV and AIDS was first detected in 1986 and according to UNAIDS estimates, this country now has over 80,000 infected people…and counting. HIV/AIDS programming needs to become part of the DNA of media companies globally.
In the beginning of the advertising campaign against AIDS in the initial years… a time when media men were scared to even write the word “AIDS” in the copy of a commercial. There were restrictions and they did not know how to address the issue. It was after a lot of guts that a commercial was finally produced saying: “AIDS is a dangerous disease, prevention is must”. It was later improved to “HIV is dangerous, Protect yourself” focusing on only blood and blood products as the mode of transmission. There was no mention of sex because media men were not permitted to use the word “condom”.
In 2002 that a commercial was finally made showing and promoting male contraception. It was approved by the local censor board with some modification, but when it was ready to be aired, the state run media resisted its telecast as the concerned officials got cold feet and said no. it should be “ qurbat k taaluqaat mein ehtyat kijye “ and use this ( condom was shown). It did not even use the word Condom. It was only after 2002 that all the modes of transmission of HIV and AIDS between the sexes were explained. During this period, media has started taking up the issue in their programming.
If we make comparison between Indian and Pakistani awareness campaigns, Pakistan is still years behind. As in Indian commercials they openly discuss the issue as in Pakistan things are yet not openly discussed. As researcher have analysis of some Indian TV commercial on AIDS. In one Indian commercial a lawyers community have shown and one of them is going to a prostitution all are making fun of him but an old aged lawyer told him that he can enjoy with prostitution but he should use Condom for safe sex so that he can protect himself from AIDS. This ad explains that peer group discussions can be effective for creating awareness for safe sex.
In Pakistan recent days a condom ad with the song “suno zara khushi ki aahat” is running on PTV (Pakistan television) with the collaboration of Green Star (family planning organization). This ad is a song based story in which a happy newly married family with a new born baby has shown. There is not mention in all the song that it’s about the use of condom but at the end of the song 5-6 second logo of the condom has shown. Although the mass media awareness campaigns have not been successful, some developing countries have successfully used the media to combat the epidemic.
Media does have the potential to contribute significantly to disseminating this HIV/AIDS messages if utilized effectively and efficiently. Radio is used by the majority of the people in the rural areas therefore radio can be effectively used in the HIV/AIDS awareness. The hypothesis of this research was that “HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns through the media were not effective” was proved otherwise. Media was accessible to both the rural and urban areas and people were aware of the mode of HIV transmission, however there was still misconception about other forms of transmission about mosquito bites, kissing and drinking from the same cup.
Thus it can be concluded that if the majority of the people are equipped with the general knowledge about HIV/AIDS, then that will the attitude change because people will know how to take care of a PLWHA, thus, stigma and discrimination would be reduced. The Media and the people’s attitude are the two factors that have proved to be powerful tools that can have a big impact on the prevalence rate of the HIV infection. The ability of the media to influence people’s perspective towards HIV/AIDS cannot be effective if other factors such as lack of knowledge, level of education, unemployment, cultural and religion interaction and social injustice.
These continue to manipulate the awareness messages in the media. It has been discovered that there is a need for more HIV and AIDS awareness campaigns carried out using appropriate and relevant languages and IEC materials that could be easily understood by the majority of the rural people, and help them change their attitudes towards the messages Media accessibility would not make a difference in the people’s attitudes, but it is the content and context of the messages through the use of the correct level of language that would enhance the people’s comprehension of the problem.
That will in turn, reduce the infection rate and decrease the level of stigma and discrimination. Media messages are not clear that people can’t understand. HIV is among us and only by accepting this can we deal with it and for this purpose researcher have planned a strategy.
- Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS., and World Health Organization. AIDS epidemic update, December 2006. World Health Organization, 2007.
- UNICEF., Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS., and World Health Organization. Young people and HIV/AIDS: Opportunity in crisis. The Stationery Office, 2002.
- Park, Benjamin J., et al. “Estimation of the current global burden of cryptococcal meningitis among persons living with HIV/AIDS.” Aids 23.4 (2009): 525-530.
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