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Title:The relationship between perceived stigma of HIV and willingness to be tested for HIV among young African American men who have sex with men in Illinois
Author(s):Lathan, Gina Lorraine
Director of Research:Alston, Reginald J
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Alston, Reginald J
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Strauser, David R; Gobin, Robyn L; Brand, Dorine J
Department / Program:Kinesiology & Community Health
Discipline:Community Health
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
African American
Abstract:Young African American men who have sex with men (YAAMSM) between the ages of 18-24 have a disproportionate rate of HIV. According to the CDC, YAAMSM account for more new infections in the United States than any other subgroup by race/ethnicity, age, and sex (CDC, 2016). To curtail the staggering rates of HIV, it is important to understand why YAAMSM are least likely to know their HIV status. The purpose of this dissertation is to examine the relationship between perceived stigma of HIV and willingness to be tested for HIV among YAAMSM in Illinois. There are disproportionate rates of HIV among YAAMSM between the ages of 18-24. This study implored a mixed methodological approach to explore the following: Aim 1) the trends of YAAMSM in Illinois; Aim 2) the role of stigma in the lives of YAAMSM in Illinois; and Aim 3) the role of stigma as a deterrent for YAAMSM being tested for HIV. To reach these aims, the following methods were utilized: HIV-antibody Testing Attitude Scale questionnaires were completed by 100 participants, secondary data analysis of the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Integrated HIV/STI Testing database was completed, and focus group were conducted with YAAMSM in two number of Illinois cities among 14 participants. The study findings revealed that HIV-related stigma plays a role in the daily lives of YAAMSM and impacts HIV testing decisions. Cultural representation is an HIV testing cue to action for YAAMSM. This research has the potential to help improve HIV prevention programming, service delivery and policy development. Tailored HIV testing services should take into consideration the social and cultural needs of YAAMSM instead of using a “one size fits all” approach.
Issue Date:2020-07-17
Rights Information:Copyright 2020 Gina Lathan
Date Available in IDEALS:2020-10-07
Date Deposited:2020-08

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