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HIV Goes Grey

HIV Goes Grey


Infusing an episode of the hit ABC drama Grey's Anatomy with factual data about the prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmissions proved an effective approach to conveying long-term knowledge about the issue, according to a survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Before the episode aired, only about 15% of those polled knew that, with proper treatment, a mother's changes of passing HIV to her baby were reduced by more than 90%. Awareness of those odds rose to 61% the week after the broadcast -- with many respondents volunteering the exact statistic of 98%. Six weeks after the show aired, 45% of those polled still recalled that antiretroviral treatment reduces vertical transmission risks by more than 90%. Based on the program's viewership, KFF estimates that as many as 8 million Americans learned and retained the correct information about mother-to-child HIV risk reduction.

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