Stigma shapes all aspects of HIV prevention and treatment, yet there are limited data on how HIV-infected youth and their families are affected by stigma in sub-Saharan Africa. The authors of this research conducted a qualitative study using focus group discussions among 39 HIV-infected adolescents receiving care at HIV clinics in western Kenya and 53 caregivers of HIV-infected children.
It was found that despite the high prevalence of HIV and increasing access to HIV-related services, HIV-infected adolescents and caregivers in western Kenya describe an environment in which HIV/AIDS-related stigma remains a major part of everyday life for HIV infected and affected individuals. These findings are critical to inform next steps and to move toward ending HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination.
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