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Can Viewing an Entertainment-Education film change HIV-Related Risk and Stigma Perceptions? Results from an Experiment in Abuja, Nigeria
Unformatted Document Text:  HIV Stigma 24 24 beliefs about policy issues and attitudes toward interacting with PLWH/A can negatively influence decisions to test. The impact of perceived severity on intentions to test is consistent with previous research conducted in the U.S. on the relationship between perceived risk and behaviour and extends our knowledge of the relationship between these variables to a different cultural context. The relative influence of the stigma variables to variance in intentions to test is something that has long been suspected, but for which there is scant empirical evidence. Convincing people to learn their serostatus has been a centerpoint of HIV prevention in the U.S. (Hays et al, 1997; Janssen, 2001) and is emerging as central to many organization’s strategies for reducing the spread of HIV in developing countries such as Nigeria (UNAIDS, 2002). This data indicates that particular stigma perceptions can influence testing behaviours as does perceived severity of HIV. Existing models of behaviour change have typically focussed on risk perceptions and do not account for stigma-related perceptions; likewise, the literature on stigma has been largely descriptive to date. Theoretical models designed to predict behaviours should bridge these two areas of research in order to better predict behaviours. Although this study provides evidence for one behavioural domain (i.e. HIV testing), other behaviours are likely to be influenced by stigma perceptions; additional research is necessary to uncover the nature of these relationships. The limited relationship between perceived susceptibility to HIV and intentions to test provides evidence that the perceived susceptibility-behavioural intention relationship does not hold in Nigeria as it does in the United States. This is entirely plausible, given that there is little research to date on the nature of the relationship between perceived risk and behavioural outcomes in Nigeria; additional research should test the replicability of these results.

Authors: Lapinski, Maria. and Nwulu, Paul.
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HIV Stigma 24
24
beliefs about policy issues and attitudes toward interacting with PLWH/A can negatively
influence decisions to test. The impact of perceived severity on intentions to test is consistent
with previous research conducted in the U.S. on the relationship between perceived risk and
behaviour and extends our knowledge of the relationship between these variables to a different
cultural context. The relative influence of the stigma variables to variance in intentions to test is
something that has long been suspected, but for which there is scant empirical evidence.
Convincing people to learn their serostatus has been a centerpoint of HIV prevention in
the U.S. (Hays et al, 1997; Janssen, 2001) and is emerging as central to many organization’s
strategies for reducing the spread of HIV in developing countries such as Nigeria (UNAIDS,
2002). This data indicates that particular stigma perceptions can influence testing behaviours as
does perceived severity of HIV. Existing models of behaviour change have typically focussed on
risk perceptions and do not account for stigma-related perceptions; likewise, the literature on
stigma has been largely descriptive to date. Theoretical models designed to predict behaviours
should bridge these two areas of research in order to better predict behaviours. Although this
study provides evidence for one behavioural domain (i.e. HIV testing), other behaviours are
likely to be influenced by stigma perceptions; additional research is necessary to uncover the
nature of these relationships. The limited relationship between perceived susceptibility to HIV
and intentions to test provides evidence that the perceived susceptibility-behavioural intention
relationship does not hold in Nigeria as it does in the United States. This is entirely plausible,
given that there is little research to date on the nature of the relationship between perceived risk
and behavioural outcomes in Nigeria; additional research should test the replicability of these
results.


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