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Interventions to Reduce HIV/AIDS Stigma: What Have We Learned?

This article reviews 22 studies that test a variety of interventions to decrease AIDS stigma in developed and developing countries. This article assesses published studies that met stringent evaluation criteria in order to draw lessons for future development of interventions to combat stigma. The target group, setting, type of intervention, measures, and scale of these studies varied tremendously. The majority (14) of the studies aimed to increase tolerance of persons living with HIV/AIDS (PLHA) among the general population. The remaining studies tested interventions to increase willingness to treat PLHA among health care providers or improve coping strategies for dealing with AIDS stigma among PLHA or at-risk groups. Results suggest some stigma reduction interventions appear to work, at least on a small scale and in the short term, but many gaps remain especially in relation to scale and duration of impact and in terms of gendered impact of stigma reduction interventions.

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