Intersectional Stigma in Men who have Sex with Men living with HIV: Implications for Mental Health.
MetadataShow full item record
This study empirically measured how HIV-related stigma mediates the relationship between migration background and mental health concerns of men who have sex with men (MSM) living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), in order to investigate the intersectional stigmas that may influence the mental health concerns of MSM living with HIV. The study sample was based on data from the 2018 online survey ‘Men and Sexuality’, and focused on the HIV-positive sample (n = 360, median age = 47, Dutch background = 280). The questions assessed in this study measured HIV-related stigma (HIV Barometer Survey) and anxiety and depression (HADS). The migration background of participants was measured according to the Dutch, Western and non-Western background, based on the categorisations from the Dutch national bureau of statistics (CBS). Additionally, age, level of education and time since HIV diagnosis were included as control variables. The analysis revealed that mental health concerns as well as HIV-related stigma are stronger in those from a non-Western migration background (p ≤0.05). The mediation analysis supported the hypothesis that HIV-related stigma mediates the relationships between migration background and mental health concerns, in the case of non-Western background, b = 0.64, 95% CI (0.04, 1.38). The results reveal a difference in stigma and mental health concerns across different migration backgrounds of MSM living with HIV, and by taking factors specific to the community, the significant mediation analysis may point towards evidence of an intersectionality of stigmas. Overall, the evidence shows that more efforts must be made in preventing HIV-related stigma and mental health concerns for MSM living with HIV from non-Western migration backgrounds. Thus, interventions must consider more closely the internal stigma and external stigma towards HIV in non-Western migration groups, as stigma and its related mental health concerns have implications on the progression and treatment of HIV.