XVIII International AIDS Conference


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Implementation of the people living with HIV/AIDS stigma index in Mexico: operationalizing the greater involvement of people living with HIV and increasing advocacy and building the evidence base

A. Luna1, G. Cabrera1, D. Mendoza2, E. Delgado2

1Mexican Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS, Mexico DF, Mexico, 2Mexfam, Mexico DF, Mexico

Issues: Stigma & Discrimination is still one of the most important factors of vulnerability that drives the HIV epidemic of HIV. Mexico is a country with a concentrated epidemic affecting gay men and other MSM; understand the social, cultural and political factors that influence the course of the epidemic, using community research is a new approach to carry out advocacy interventions leading by PLHIV.
Description: The Stigma Index in Mexico is carry out by Mexican Network of PLHIV and Mexfam is linked with the global research tool developed by IPPF, GNP+, ICW, and UNAIDS, implemented a multi-sectorial approach in the country that includes: National AIDS Program and HHRR and S&D National Commissions, Private Sector and USAID/HPI. A national group newly trained persons with HIV conform a team of community researches, applied 480 questionnaires in 40 cities in Mexico (the most affected by HIV). A specific annex about homophobia has been developed. After the analysis process (using Epi-Info software), a series materials will be produced. The final findings will become in an advocacy tool to advocate in community, program and policy levels. A recognized research from the academia accompanied and supervising the process from the sample design to the final document.
Lessons learned: The involvement of people living with HIV as researchers contributes to promote the MIPA principles. The process of gathering, analyze and advocating for a changes in a range of policies and services is a successful way to empower the community. A multi-sectorial approach is key to involving the different stakeholders involved in successful decision making process to advocacy efforts.
Next steps: Continue the analysis of the findings, share these in more detailed, as well the description of the advocacy strategy. Discuss advocacy implementation.

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