Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 2 or otherwise known as “HIV-2” has been identified as the second type of HIV disease that was discovered in 1986 in West Africa, from an isolated case of AIDS afflicted patients in the area. Studies revealed that there has been scant literature written about the natural history of HIV-2. However, present research has shown that HIV-1 and HIV-2 have some similarities and differences since they hold similar modes of transmission of the virus. However, it appears that the immunodeficiency of patients who are infected with HIV-2 develop slowly than HIV-1 and that the second type of HIV is milder than the first.
The article of Kline et al. (2013) presents the study showing that the HIV transmission risk behavior among South Africans who were reported to be infected with HIV and are on antiretroviral therapy (ART) decrease from 43.7 percent to 23.2 percent in unprotected sex of last sexual contact based on a one-year prospective study of HIV patients receiving the therapy. The participants of the study were individuals infected with HIV and receiving ART who are attended by 16 rural and urban public clinics in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa completed. The measures that were used include a 10-item HIV prevention information scale that was adapted from existing validated measures being used in studies in South Africa in order to assess the HIV prevention knowledge in areas of specific relevance for people living with HIV and HIV-infected persons (Kline et al., 2013). The result also showed that the current research represents the first test of theorized that is related to HIV transmission risk behavior in a large sample of South African men and women who are HIV-infected has a number of limitations. It can be concluded that the findings have potential biases since they are based on self-reports (Kline et. al., 2013).
Education is the key to help fight the spread of HIV-2. Although, there has been no cure that has yet to be discovered, this disease can be managed if there is a treatment plan that will be followed to address the issue. The primary goal for this research study is to be able to work with the WHO (World Health Organization) in helping them disseminate the information on HIV-2 prevention and intervention to decrease the number of patients afflicted with the disease. The personal goal of the author is to make an impact in the lives of poor people in West Africa by establishing a non-profit organization that aims to fight this disease.
The best prevention against HIV-2 is by focusing on the communication skill building (Sales et al., 2012). According to Rotheram-Borus et al. (2009), information dissemination on how to prevent the spread or transfer of the disease is the most efficacious HIV intervention. Based on the recent study of HIV prevention interventions for African American women, intervention was effective by using gender and culturally specific materials which provided training in condom use and finding the middle ground on how to practice safer sex, and by teaching them with regard to sex (Sales, et al., 2012).
Hence, it can be concluded that the focus of the prevention programs should be on communication and negotiation strategies in order to educate females living in the West Africa. One of the identified strategies is to improve partner communication to help prevention the spread of HIV-2 by practicing assertive communication (Sales, et al., 2012). Although there are negotiating risks involved, it is best to set the sexual health boundaries or limitations to sex their partners. The risk of transmitting HIV can be done through condom use, HIV testing, and abstinence. The females who live in West Africa should be encouraged to practice communicating their sexual health choice by consulting the health educators on how to deal with their male sex partners.
In the case of the health educators, they must be able to give constructive feedback to the female individuals who seek their help on how to enhance their communication skills building. It Proficiency in communicating sexual health choice can be achieved by continued practice. The HIV-2 prevention interventions must be given to adolescents in order to educate them to take full accountability for the decisions they make if they decide to engage in sexual activities. The study of Sales et al. (2012) that dealt with the prevention program for African American adult women has been proven to be highly effective through self-efficacy for condom use during the last sexual encounters of the participants.
It is imperative that WHO and other non-profit organization create information drive campaigns that increases the awareness of the community about HIV-2 and educate the people the effective ways of communicating with sexual partners towards improved protective behaviors such as condom use and abstinence.
Kiene, S. M., Fisher, W. A., Shuper, P. A., Cornman, D. H., Christie, S., MacDonald, S., & Fisher, J. D. (2013). Understanding HIV transmission risk behavior among HIV-infected
South Africans receiving antiretroviral therapy: An Information-Motivation-Behavioral Skills Model analysis. Health Psychology, 32(8), 860-868.
Matheron, S., Pueyo, S., Damond, F., et al. (2003). Factors associated with clinical progression in HIV-2 infected-patients: the French ANRS cohort. AIDS, 17(18), 2593-2601.
Rotheram-Borus, M. J., Swendeman, D., Flannery, D., Rice, E., Adamson, D. M., & Ingram, B.
( 2009). Common factors in effective HIV prevention programs. AIDS and Behavior, 13, 399– 408.
Sales, J. M., Lang, D. L., Di Clemente, R. J., Latham, T. P., Wingood, G. M., Hardin, J. W., & Rose, E. S. (2012). The mediating role of partner communication frequency on condom use among African American adolescent females participating in an HIV prevention intervention. Health Psychology, 31(1), 63-69.