University Post
University of Copenhagen
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New master´s programme in HIV

A brand new master's programme in HIV virus at the University of Copenhagen has just opened its doors to admissions

The new ‘Master in HIV’ is the first ever master’s programme of its kind, focussing on clinical and organisational management of the virus.

The Copenhagen HIV programme received the go-ahead this autumn, and they are now accepting admissions at the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Copenhagen.

The University Post spoke to the coordinator of the Masters Programme, Michelle Ellefson, to learn more about the need for the master’s.

Many patients receiving treatment

The one year master’s will educate people with a clinical – nurses and doctors – or an operational background – like health programme managers and health care advisers, and is the first of its kind to focus on teaching both clinical and organisational management.

Millions of patients across the world are currently receiving treatment for HIV, and an additional million a year will start treatment, says Michelle Ellefson.

»We have a huge number of people who will now have access to treatment, and will have had access over the last few years because of programmes like 2003’s 3 by 5 Initiative,« she says.

There is a niche that needs filling

»What we are lacking, and where we could use academic insight, is in terms of personnel administering HIV medicine, and the management of all of the complexities around co-infection with tuberculosis, hepatitis etc.,« she says.

»There is the need for more trained, skilled personnel for this, as well as to monitor the side effects and the resistance of medicine as more and more patients are treated,« says Michelle Ellefson.

Multidisciplinary course

HIV is the subject area, but an important part of the curriculum is that the skills learnt in the master’s programme can be translated into other areas – like the current global flu epidemic for instance.

Much of the teaching is cross-disciplinary due to the nature of HIV and the complex relationship between the virus, other diseases and managing them.

According to the Master of HIV website, the combination of organisational management and clinical studies will see graduates contributing to research, helping to improve the treatment and care of people with HIV, analysing issues, and understanding and working with accepted policies and standards.

You can read more about the Master in HIV and admissions here.