Stigma of having a sexually transmitted infection: Perceptions of human papillomavirus infection and the needs for counseling
Methods: We conducted 24 semi-structured interviews with women users of CCSP in two health clinics in Michoacan, Mexico. The interviews assessed the belives, perceptions of susceptibility and severity about HPV testing. The interpretation of the data was based on the Health Belief Model and the Theory of Reasoned Action with a gender focus.
Results: Most of the women had little information about HPV. Our findings show that women have a great fear of HPV and perceive that a woman with a positive result could be infected by a promiscuous or unfaithful partner or themselves are. The women received lack counseling about HPV, the test and the significance of their results. The findings could be related with negative effects.
Conclusions: Women express concerns about their HPV results. Greater awareness of importance of cervical cancer screening could be useful to mitigate potential psychosocial effects and gradually reduce the stigma to HPV infection. CCSP should be implemented in conjunction with communication strategies and counseling, it is important to develop guidelines for education about HPV, according to the needs of women and their context and it is necessary to train health workers to provide counseling.
Learning Areas:Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Public health or related education
Social and behavioral sciences
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health
Describe beliefs about HPV infection, perceptions of stigma towards women with HPV and counseling needs.
Keyword(s): Health Promotion and Education, Cancer Prevention and Screening
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified because I have been working in the field of STI research for over 10 years now with a specific focus on human papillomavirus infection. I have multiple publications and presentations on the HPV topic in Latin America.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.