In the more than two decades that psychology professor Seth Kalichman has devoted to HIV/AIDS prevention, he has seen the public health landscape change dramatically. This is what he had hoped for when, as a graduate student doing a clinical psychology internship, he worked with researcher Jeffrey A. Kelly at the Medical College of Wisconsin.
Kelly, a pioneer in community AIDS prevention, was one of the first to study at-risk populations in an attempt to discern the types of programs that might help prevent the spread of the disease.
“I was blown away when I started working with Kelly during my internship in 1991,” Kalichman says. “This was really psychology in action; it was public health on a comprehensive scale that could actually make a significant impact on a serious and increasingly widespread problem.”
Kalichman’s research has focused on the Southern United Sates and South Africa. He is a principal investigator for the Center for Health, Intervention, and Prevention (CHIP) one of UConn’s leading research institutes, and director of the Southeast HIV/AIDS Research and Evaluation Project (SHARE). He received the 2005 Distinguished Scientist Award from the Society for Behavioral Medicine, and is the author of five books on HIV/AIDS prevention and care.
“There’s a real possibility that in the not too distant future we will look at HIV/AIDS in much the same way we look at diabetes and other chronic diseases that can be largely controlled by making certain lifestyle changes and taking appropriate medication.”
In recognition of World AIDS Awareness Month, Kalichman discussed with UConn Today the changes he has observed in HIV/AIDS prevention.
Read more at UConn Today
By: Sheila Foran