Date of Award

12-5-2008

Degree Type

Closed Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)

Department

Public Health

First Advisor

Dr. Monica Swahn - Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Frances McCarty - Co-Chair

Abstract

HIV/AIDS remains one of the most challenging public health problems, especially as the number of people living with the disease increased to over 33 million in 2007 while deaths increased to 2.0 million. The progression of HIV/AIDS is often linked to multiple levels of influence such as individual, political, economic, health and social factors. There is little known about the influence of some of these factors on the prevalence of HIV/AIDS in the countries of the Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) of the World Health Organization. Using data from EMR countries, this study analyzed the progression of HIV/AIDS from 2003 to 2005, and examined the correlation between a number of political, economic, social, and health-related indicators with three HIV/AIDS outcome measures (HIV/AIDS estimated rates, HIV/AIDS death rates, and antiretroviral therapy coverage rates) for the year 2005. Bivariate correlation analyses showed several political, economic, social, and health-related variables to be significantly associated with antiretroviral therapy coverage rates. Immunization rate was the only variable significantly associated with the estimated HIV/AIDS rates; while no significant associations were identified with the HIV/AIDS death rates. The results of this study suggest that progression of the disease and treatment accessibility may be influenced by the political, economic, social, and health situations in EMR countries.

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