About the Index

The process of working with the index is just as important as the results.

The 'Standards for Country Rollout' and the 'User Guide' are the basis for implementation of this tool, they are available in at least English, French, Arabic and Portuguese. The questionnaire that supports this tool has been translated into more than 50 languages. The  questionnaire is NOT available on this site as the use of the tool is something that needs to be agreed with the international partnership.   

The process

Operationalizing the Greater Involvement of People Living with HIV

The People Living with HIV Stigma Index is a tool used by, as well as for, people living with HIV. The Index supports the GIPA (Greater Involvement of People living with HIV and AIDS) principle through being driven by PLHIV and their networks. By acting on this principle the People Living with HIV Stigma Index empowers both individuals and communities most affected by the epidemic.

The People Living with HIV Stigma Index can be adopted by a variety of different  groups of people living with HIV. Groups can then use it to understand experiences of stigma and discrimination in their locality. The use of the PLHIV Stigma Index over time  will be instrumental in increasing our collective understanding and detecting changes and trends.

The benefits of the People Living with HIV Stigma Index for those conducting it go further than collecting much-needed evidence. The process of empowering people living with HIV, their networks and communities is crucial. The People Living with HIV Stigma Index will therefore be both a catalyst for creating and foster change in the communities in which it is used.

By September 2013 more than 1300 PLHIV have been trained as interviewers and a further 45,000 PLHIV have been interviewed from 50 countries. The PLHIV Stigma index questionnaire has been translated into 54 languages.

The results

Increasing advocacy and building the evidence base

The Index will increase the understanding of how stigma and discrimination is experienced by people living with HIV. The evidence gained will then shape future programmatic interventions and policy change.

Policy and programme managers have long recognised that action is needed to address stigma and discrimination. The information gained from the Index will provide evidence for the success (or failures) of current programmes and highlight neglected areas requiring future action. These include improving workplace policies, informing debates about the criminalisation of HIV transmission, and promoting the realization of human rights. Consequently, the Index will be a powerful advocacy tool which will support the collective goal of Governments, NGOs and activists alike to reduce the stigma and discrimination linked to HIV.