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Curbing Domestic Violence Key to Reducing HIV Infection Among South African Women

Women in South Africa who are victims of domestic violence are more likely to become infected with HIV compared to women who do not experience such behavior, according to a study published June 16, 2010 in The Lancet'‘s Online First.

Nearly one in seven new HIV infections could be prevented if women were not subjected to physical or sexual abuse, and a similar number prevented if relationship inequalities were eliminated, the study authors note.

"This is the first longitudinal study to show that women in Africa who experience violence from male partners are more likely to become HIV positive, something we have suspected, but never before proven," says study co-author Kristin Dunkle, MPH, PhD, assistant professor of behavioral science and health education, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University.
 
 

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