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Before Ebola There Was AIDS: Evaluating the Connection between Gender Based Violence and HIV/AIDS


Professor Roger Hoerl
Union College

November 3, 2014
5:00 pm
Bailey Hall 207

Refreshments will be served in Bailey Hall 204 at 4:45pm


While the media has been focusing primarily on the recent outbreak of the Ebola virus, HIV/AIDS continues to infect and kill millions of people around the globe. Fortunately, organizations such as the World Health Organization, the Gates Foundation, and several others, are providing billions of dollars in funding to combat the spread of HIV, and save the lives of those infected. In order to effectively deploy these funds for greatest impact, many agencies utilize mathematical models that predict progression of the pandemic. One of these models is the Modes of Transmission Model (MoT), developed for UNAIDS, the global HIV/AIDS consortium led by the United Nations. Recent Math graduate Keilah Creedon focused her senior thesis on studying this model, and in particular, addressing one of its limitations; inability to account for the impact of gender based violence. Significant research has been published that demonstrates the negative impact of violence against women in spreading HIV. Keilah modified the MoT model to account for such violence, and to determine the relative impact of violence against women versus other factors contributing to the spread of the disease. Further, she conducted a sensitivity analysis to quantify the uncertainty of the model outputs to uncertainty in model inputs. When Keilah presented her thesis at the 2014 Steinmetz Symposium, she did not yet have results. I will therefore review her original research design, and then share the results we obtained from her modified model.

For additional information, send e-mail to math@union.edu or call (518) 388-6246.
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