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September 18, 2007

Farmers at Risk in West Africa

While urban regions of West Africa have had success providing HIV/AIDS prevention messages and testing, rural areas have been largely ignored by such efforts.

Researchers at the Swiss Centre for Scientific Research have noted that while HIV prevalence is higher in cities than in the countryside, a disparity of information could help drive the epidemic in rural countries. Efforts to distribute pamphlets providing information on the virus have been largely futile due to high rates of illiteracy in areas such as Senegal, Burkina Faso and the village of Oglawpo.

Researchers are lobbying for the training of rural educators to raise awareness among farming populations, in addition to increasing the number of voluntary testing centers in the local areas.

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