The Association between Herpes Simplex Type 2, Educational Attainment, School Status and Learning Outcomes among Adolescents in Rural Malawi

Barbara S. Mensch, Population Council
Satvika Chalasani, Population Council
Erica Soler-Hampejsek, Population Council
Christine A. Kelly, Population Council
Christopher Sudfeld, Harvard University
Monica J. Grant, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Paul C. Hewett, Population Council

Demographers have long observed that the better educated are healthier than their less educated counterparts. Yet, beginning in the early 1990s, research in sub-Saharan Africa indicated that HIV prevalence was higher among those with more schooling. Studies found that the better educated were more likely to live in urban areas, were more mobile, and had greater disposable income. Using data from a longitudinal survey of adolescents in rural Malawi first interviewed in 2007, and HSV-2 results collected from respondents in 2010 and 2011, the goal of this paper is to examine the association between HSV-2 and educational attainment, current school status and learning outcomes, and to investigate the implication of testing refusal for our findings. Because HIV prevalence is too low at this age to provide sufficient power for estimating associations reliably, HSV-2 status, which increases the likelihood of HIV acquisition, is used as an indicator of HIV risk.

  See extended abstract

Presented in Session 10: HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Diseases