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To analyse antiretroviral treatment (ART) knowledge and HIV- and ART-related stigma among the adult population in a rural Tanzanian community. Population-based cross-sectional survey of 694 adults (15-49 years of age). Latent class analysis (LCA) categorized respondents' levels of ART knowledge and of ART-related stigma. Multinomial logistic regression assessed the association between the levels of ART knowledge and HIV- and ART-related stigma, while controlling for the effects of age, gender, education, marital status and occupation. More than one-third of men and women in the study reported that they had never heard of ART. Among those who had heard of ART, 24% were east informed about ART, 8% moderately informed, and 68% highly informed. Regarding ART-related stigma, 28% were least stigmatizing, 41% moderately stigmatizing, and 31% highly stigmatizing toward persons taking ART. Respondents that had at least primary education were more likely to have high levels of knowledge about ART (OR 3.09, 95% CI 1.61-5.94). Participants highly informed about ART held less HIV- and ART-related stigma towards ART patients (OR 0.26, 95% CI 0.09-0.74). The lack of ART knowledge is broad, and there is a strong association between ART knowledge and individual education level. These are relevant findings for both HIV prevention and HIV treatment program interventions that address ART-related stigma across the entire spectrum of the community.


Abela Mpobela Agnarson, Francis Levira, Honorati Masanja, Anna Mia Ekström, Anna Thorson. Antiretroviral treatment knowledge and stigma--implications for programs and HIV treatment interventions in rural Tanzanian populations. PloS one. 2013;8(1):e53993

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PMID: 23342056

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