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Namibia has been affected by the HumanImmunodeficiency Virus HIV and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome AIDSpandemic with infected and affected persons experiencing stigma at differentlevels. Despite the high level of knowledge on HIV-AIDS, stigma remains achallenge. It was for this reason that this paper describes and measures thelevel of HIV-AIDS stigma in a rural community in Namibia. Mixed methods were usedto collect data from 224 participants consisting of 93 people living withHIV-AIDS PLWHA who were recruited voluntarily from their support groups, 77family members nominated by PLWHA participants, 31 community members who wererecruited through simple random sampling and 19 opinion leaders who werepurposefully selected and four health care workers from an Antiretroviralclinic who were available at the time of this study. Three measurementinstruments namely HIV-AIDS Stigma Instrument-PLWHA HASI-P, Family &Community Stigma Instrument F&C-SI and HIV-AIDS Stigma Instrument-NurseHASI- N were used. In-depth interviews were conducted to complement thequantitative results. The study found that stigma manifests in different waysand results revealed that verbal abuse 55%, n = 50, PLWHA, social isolation73%, n = 67, negative self-perception 33%, n = 30, and household stigma26% n = 19, family members were the most common form of stigma experienced byPLWHA. Furthermore health care workers reported stigma of association 50%, n =2 as care providers for people living with HIV-AIDS. The study concluded thatstigma exists although some scores such as fear of contagion and workplacestigma were low. Therefore, interventions in knowledge on basic facts of HIVtransmission need to be strengthened. Nonetheless the majority of participantsconfirmed their willingness to care for sick relatives with HIV and AIDS. Thisstudy did not explore stigma of association against caregivers with other participantsother than the four health care workers from the antiretroviral clinic. Futureresearchers can take this further.


People Living with HIV-AIDS PLWHA, Family & Community Stigma Instrument, Ongenga Constituency, Namibia

Cite this paper

Angula, P. , Ncama, B. and Frohlich, J. 2015 Assessment of HIV-AIDS Stigma in a Rural Namibian Community. World Journal of AIDS, 5, 199-207. doi: 10.4236-wja.2015.53023.

Autor: Penehafo Angula, Busisiwe Purity Ncama, Janet Frohlich



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