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Pre-exposure Prophylaxis for HIV Infection: Preventing Disease or Promoting Sexual Health?

  • Ronald O. ValdiserriEmail author
  • David R. Holtgrave
Commentary

Practitioners of public health recognize that disease prevention and health promotion occupy the same continuum of activities that are aimed at improving individual and population health. Closely related as they are, however, these two domains are not identical—either in concept or in practice. Their differences owe to the widely-accepted definition of health as a state of “complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity” [1]. Namely, while the absence of disease brought about by prevention activities is a laudable goal and an important component of health, it may not be the only condition necessary to achieve and sustain overall health.

This observation is especially pertinent when considering the domain of sexual health. Admittedly, definitions of sexual health have evolved over time and will continue to develop as our understanding of human sexuality grows [2]. Nevertheless, the following elements are currently recognized as...

Notes

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Health, Behavior & SocietyJohns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.School of Public Health, University at AlbanyRensselaerUSA

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