Christopher Rock is a third-year undergraduate studying Commerce and Advanced Mathematics at the University of New South Wales, majoring in Actuarial Studies and Applied Mathematics. I am interested in the relation of mathematical models to the real world. My project is in population-level epidemiology, and will involve dynamical systems, optimisation and sensitivity analysis. I am also studying random processes in an insurance setting. I tutor primary school mathematics, privately and through St Vincent de Paul Society, and I am interested in methods by which a tool or shortcut can be remembered easily and used without prompting.
HIV and Periodic Presumptive Treatment of STIs in Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea has a relatively high rate of HIV for the Pacific region, especially among certain populations including female sex workers (FSWs). Several STIs act as cofactors for HIV, so treating these can reduce the spread of HIV. However, many STIs are asymptomatic, or an FSW may become infected with HIV before treatment commences if we wait until she is infected before treating her. Periodic presumptive treatment is an emerging HIV management program under which FSWs receive regular doses of antibiotics as if they are infected. This project attempts to model the effects of implementing periodic presumptive treatment in Papua New Guinea.