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Community factors shaping HIV-related stigma among young people in three African countries
Authors: Rob Stephenson
Source: AIDS Care, 21:4,403 — 410
Topic(s): Accepting attitudes toward people living with HIV (PLHIV)
Youth
Country: Africa
  Ghana
  Zambia
  Burkina Faso
Published: APR 2009
Abstract: Despite the high prevalence of HIV/AIDS that exists in many sub-Saharan African countries, very little is known of the prevalence and context of HIV-related stigma in these settings. This paper seeks to understand the community-level factors associated with HIV-related stigma among young people in three culturally contrasting African countries: Burkina Faso, Ghana and Zambia. Using nationally representative data on young people (15-24) from Burkina Faso, Ghana and Zambia, the analysis examines the economic, demographic and behavioral dimensions of community environments that shape HIV-related stigma among young people. The results demonstrate a clear influence of the community environment on shaping HIV-related stigma among young people. The elements of the community that were significantly associated with HIV-related stigma were the economic and behavioral aspects of the community environment, and there was no evidence of relationships between demographic patterns and HIV-related stigma. Behavioral change interventions must address HIV-related stigma in order to encourage behavior change, and must take into account the social, economic and cultural environments in which young people exist. Keywords: stigma; youth; Africa; community