Monash University

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Reason: Under embargo until 31 August 2023. After this date a copy can be supplied under Section 51(2) of the Australian Copyright Act 1968 by submitting a document delivery request through your library.

“Gloves were off”: Australian nurses, HIV and AIDS, 1983–1996

posted on 2022-08-05, 04:57 authored by GERALDINE MAY FELA

This thesis draws on oral testimony and archival research to examine the response of nurses to HIV and AIDS in Australia, from the first recorded AIDS-related death in 1983 to the introduction of effective treatment—Highly Active Anti-Retroviral Therapy (HAART)—in 1996. As they have around the world, nurses played a significant role in responding to Australia’s HIV and AIDS crisis. The thirty nurses whose interviews helped to shape this thesis are from diverse geographic and clinical settings; they represent each state and territory in Australia, rural and urban areas, wards, clinics and community nursing. Together, their stories paint a vivid and nuanced picture of HIV and AIDS nursing, and shed light on underexamined aspects of Australia’s AIDS crisis.


Principal supervisor

Alistair Thomson

Additional supervisor 1

Paula Michaels

Year of Award


Department, School or Centre

School of Philosophical, Historical & International Studies


Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type


Campus location



Faculty of Arts