HIV is spreading rapidly, and effective treatments continue to elude science. Preventive interventions are now our best defense against the epidemic--but they require a clear understanding of the behavioral and mental health aspects of HIV infection and AIDS.
AIDS and Behavior provides an update of what investigators in the biobehavioral, psychological, and social sciences have discovered recently about those aspects of the disease and offers specific recommendations for research directions and priorities. This volume candidly discusses the sexual and drug-use behaviors that promote transmission of HIV and reports on the latest efforts to monitor the epidemic in its social contexts. The committee reviews new findings on how and why risky behaviors occur and efforts to develop strategies for changing such behaviors. The volume presents findings on the disease's progression and on the psychosocial impacts of HIV and AIDS, with a view toward intervention and improved caregiving. AIDS and Behavior also evaluates the status of behavioral and prevention aspects of AIDS research at the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. The volume presents background on the three institutes; their recent reorganization; their research budgets, programs, and priorities; and other important details. The committee offers specific recommendations for the institutes concerning the balance between biomedical and behavioral investigations, adequacy of administrative structures, and other research management issues. Anyone interested in the continuing quest for new knowledge on preventing HIV and AIDS will want to own this book: policymakers, researchers, research administrators, public health professionals, psychologists, AIDS advocates and service providers, faculty, and students.