Relationship of health rating and HIV-related stigma among people living with HIV: a community study

Mónica Gutiérrez, Jamal Brooks-Hawkins, Kenja Hassan, Wendy Wolfersteig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this study was to understand the impact of stigma among a geographic population of people living with HIV in Maricopa County, Arizona. People living with HIV who experience stigma have lower medication adherence and fewer kept appointments. The people living with HIV patient survey was administered using both paper and online versions in the beginning months of 2019. A total of 296 respondents completed the survey for this study. Participants were recruited through multiple methods, including online sites, the Phoenix AIDS Walk, health clinics, and the identification of zip codes with high HIV prevalence rates. There was a significant relationship between health status and age, with those who reported a higher health rating, that of excellent or good, more likely to be 45 years of age or older, X2 (1, N = 296) = 4.812, p = 0.028. Researchers and health care providers must be attentive to these variations and intersecting stigmas when providing services across diverse populations, especially when working with a high-stigma population such as people living with HIV. Providers can take a more active role in helping people living with HIV to see how their perceptions and experience of HIV-related stigma may be taking a toll on their perceptions of their health, as well as their approach to treatment, and refer them to support groups or individual counseling. Strategies, policies, and messages should be tailored with cultural, social, and ethnic sensitivities in mind. To address these threats, policies must be created that reduce the impact of HIV-related stigma within various systems, including but not limited to the public health sector.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number98
JournalHumanities and Social Sciences Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Psychology(all)
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)


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