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Studies conducted in Sub-Saharan Africa during the 1980s generally found a positive correlation between socioeconomic characteristics such as education, income, and wealth and subsequent contraction of HIV. However, as the disease has progressed, the relationship between socioeconomic status and HIV contraction may have changed in many areas of Sub Saharan Africa, although there is little hard evidence to support this. This paper seeks to determine the ex ante socioeconomic characteristics of individuals who die between the ages of 15 to 59 years of age, using nationally representative panel data on 18,821 individuals surveyed in 2001 and 2004 in rural Zambia. The findings from this study will help policy-makers and development agencies better understand current transmission pathways of HIV/AIDS, which should help in the formulation of AIDS prevention and mitigation strategies.


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