Sex Work, Drugs & HIV: A Global Outlook

Subject POPH90198 (2010)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2010.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2010:

July, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 30 hours over 5 days
Total Time Commitment: In addition to the stated contact hours, students are expected to spend at least 2 hours of study for each hour of contact
Prerequisites: None
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: Basic knowledge of HIV and its routes of transmission is recommended but not essential. This subject can be taken in conjunction with, and is complimentary to other MPH subjects with a HIV theme.

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements: None


Nossal Institute for Global Health
University of Melbourne
Alan Gilbert Building
Level 4, 161 Barry Street
Carlton VIC 3010
Phone: +61 3 83440912
Fax: +61 3 83449130


Academic Programs Office
Melbourne School of Population Health
Tel: +61 3 8344 9339
Fax: +61 3 8344 0824

Subject Overview: This largely interactive and participatory subject uses case studies from around the world to highlight the myriad of factors that contribute to HIV vulnerability of sex workers and examines the overlapping vulnerabilities of sex work and injecting drug use (IDU) and men who have sex with men (MSM).
It explores the themes of stigma and discrimination, gender inequities, violence , trafficking, funding policies and legal frameworks, and their impact on HIV vulnerability and mitigation. The training will be conducted in conjunction with sex worker representatives from RhED (, and includes a guided field visit to a working brothel to see first hand the settings in which the Victorian sex industry operates.
  • Demonstrate increased knowledge of issues pertaining to sex work and HIV, including overlapping vulnerabilities including injecting drug use and sex between men.
  • Demonstrate increased confidence to develop effective action plans to reduce sex workers’ vulnerability to HIV, which are inclusive of human rights approaches, advocacy, HIV prevention initiatives, treatment and access to appropriate services.
  • Reflect on good practice, evidence and policies regarding HIV and sex work.
  • Demonstrate an increased ability to address issues of stigma and discrimination regarding sex work and HIV including personal and community attitudes that might encourage or hinder sex workers access to care and utilise/modify accordingly.
  • Articulate the link between sex work and gender
  • Demonstrate a clearer understanding of the value of promoting and supporting better HIV prevention, treatment and access to appropriate services for sex workers

Assessment: Major written assignment 3000 words due 6 weeks after end of course- 50%
Minor written assignment 1000 words due 2 weeks after end of course - 20%
Oral presentation to be presented on last day of short course - 30%
Prescribed Texts: A set of readings and recommended references will be provided.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills: Analytical thinking, report writing including referencing, research, public speaking, team work and communication skills, diplomacy, time management, sensitivity, prioritising and organisational skills.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: International Health

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