Wells Enlightens Andover Community About African HIV/AIDS Epidemic

After spending the last 10 years fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the deserts of Kenya and other parts of Sub-Saharan Africa, epidemiologist Dr. Victoria Wells Wulsin lectured at Andover about her experiences and urged students to get involved in AIDS prevention. Dr. Wells’ work focuses more on Africa than other places because AIDS and HIV are much more prevalent there. Every day 8000 people die from AIDS, including 7000 from Sub-Saharan Africa. Ten percent of the population in Kenya is HIV positive or has AIDS, compared to only 0.1 percent in the U.S. This disparity is due to multiple factors: poverty, prostitution, competing needs, separated spouses, poor health infrastructure, the helplessness of women, and cultural practices. As sexually transmitted diseases are linked to the spread of AIDS, Dr. Wells’ work concentrates on the promotion of contraceptive methods in Africa.