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Classroom Activities: Drug Adherence Activity

Summary

To accompany the lecture series AIDS: Evolution of an Epidemic. In this activity, you simulate taking HIV antiretroviral drugs by using tic tac mints and Kool-Aid packets.

HIV antiretroviral drug therapy can suppress HIV and delay the onset of AIDS for many years. Because HIV has a high mutation rate, treating a patient with only one drug can inadvertently select for a mutant drug resistant strain of HIV. Multi-drug therapies are prescribed so that even if a mutant strain resistant to one drug arises, it will still be suppressed by the other drugs.

In this activity, you will participate in a simulation of HIV antiretroviral drug therapy. You will experience firsthand how easy or difficult it is to fully adhere to a treatment program.

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