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London, June 29 (ANI): Longer the secondary schooling significantly lowers the risk of HIV infection, especially for girls, claims a new study.

Harvard researchers conducted a research in Botswana, and found that for each additional year of secondary school, students lowered their risk of HIV infection by 8 percentage points about a decade later, from 25 percent to about 17 percent infected.

It could be a very cost-effective way to halt the spread of the virus.

First author of the study, Jan-Walter De Neve said the findings confirm that secondary schooling is an important structural determinant of HIV infection and that this relation is causal.

Researchers had examined data from about 7,000 people who participated in the Botswana AIDS Impact Surveys-national household surveys that included HIV testing-and who were at least 18 years old at the time of the surveys. It was found that additional years of secondary school (grades 8-12) were linked with significantly lower risk of HIV, particularly for women, whose HIV risk dropped by 12 percentage points with each added year of secondary school. No effect was found for people with less than nine years of schooling.

According to National AIDS Control Organization of India, the prevalence of AIDS in India had come down 0.41 in 2002 to 0.27 in 2013.

The study is published online in The Lancet Global Health. (ANI)

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