AIDS and Behavior

, 13:1160 | Cite as

From Conceptualizing to Measuring HIV Stigma: A Review of HIV Stigma Mechanism Measures

  • Valerie A. EarnshawEmail author
  • Stephenie R. Chaudoir
Review Paper


Recent analyses suggest that lack of clarity in the conceptualization and measurement of HIV stigma at an individual level is a significant barrier to HIV prevention and treatment efforts. In order to address this concern, we articulate a new framework designed to aid in clarifying the conceptualization and measurement of HIV stigma among individuals. The HIV Stigma Framework explores how the stigma of HIV elicits a series of stigma mechanisms, which in turn lead to deleterious outcomes for HIV uninfected and infected people. We then apply this framework to review measures developed to gauge the effect of HIV stigma since the beginning of the epidemic. Finally, we emphasize the utility of using three questions to guide future HIV stigma research: who is affected by, how are they affected by, and what are the outcomes of HIV stigma?


Stigma Prejudice Discrimination Scales Measurement 



Preparation of this manuscript was supported by a training fellowship (T32MH074387) awarded to the first author and by a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award pre-doctoral fellowship (F31MH080651) awarded to the second author, both from the National Institute of Mental Health. Peter Vanable of Syracuse University served as Consulting Editor for this article. We thank Amy Huntington, Seth Kalichman, Kimberly McClure, Nicole Overstreet, Eileen Pitpitan, Diane Quinn, and two anonymous reviewers for their helpful comments on earlier versions of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ConnecticutStorrsUSA
  2. 2.Center for Health, Intervention, and PreventionUniversity of ConnecticutStorrsUSA

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