AIDS, Sterile Needles, and Ethnocentrism

  • Robyn M. Dawes
Part of the Social Psychological Applications to Social Issues book series (SPAS, volume 3)


A (1986) Institute of Medicine/National Academy of Sciences report concluded that purely medical approaches to combating human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or controlling its spread would be insufficient—at least prior to the time that an effective vaccine or treatment could be developed (which appears to be always five years from the time its possibility is discussed). The major ways in which HIV is contracted and spread were well known by the time of that report: Sexual contact with an infected person or exposure to contaminated blood, such as occurs during the sharing of needles or “the works” in illicit intravenous drug use. Specifically, members of both the gay and heterosexual populations who have sex with people who might be infected should use latex condoms, and people injecting drugs intravenously should take great care not to share either the drugs themselves or any equipment that might be contaminated.


Human Immunodeficiency Virus Drug User Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection Illegal Drug Sterile Needle 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robyn M. Dawes
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Social and Decision SciencesCarnegie Mellon UniversityPittsburghUSA

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