Mexico: Kimberly Brouwer, Ph.D., associate professor of medicine in the Division of Global Public Health at UC San Diego, and her team, is developing a GIS model to measure HIV/AIDS clustering and recommend better distribution of health services. As principal investigator of a five-year grant by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, she is studying HIV/AIDS and injection drug use in cities along the Mexico and the US border, in an effort to inform public health interventions. With GIS model, she aims to explore social and environmental factors affecting disease transmission and risk behaviours.
According to Brouwer, location is as much a risk factor as behaviour and mobility often increases infection exposure.
Thirty years ago, the first cases of what would later become known as AIDS were reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Since then, HIV/AIDS has become a pandemic, infecting more than 60 million people worldwide.
In the US, approximately 56,000 new infections occur each year, and more than 1.1 million people are living with HIV.